How to Paint with Transparent Oil Paints

By Milan Art Institute on November 1, 2019
How to Paint with Transparent Oil Paints

Painting with transparents can be the distinguishing factor that separates professional artists from amateur artists. There are many different uses for transparent oil paints. One of the main benefits of using transparents is that it adds a layer of depth to your art. For example, try mixing a cool transparent color with a medium such as galkyd, and then brushing it on a shadow or a darker area to give it the impression of depth. Another use could be to give a three dimensional shine to a model’s lips to give them a sense of movement and vibrancy. Transparents have this magical effect of adding a juicy richness to your painting. 

Transparent oil paints can be used to create excellent drips. If you dip your brush in clean paint thinner and mix that with transparent oil paint, then you’ll be able to achieve beautiful drips. In order to give a translucent or veiled look to your painting, you’ll want to mix transparent oil paint in either paint thinner or other mediums such as, galkyd, liquin etc.  Another tip for transparent oils is to make sure you go from light to dark. Glaze over the brighter areas first and add on a white highlight for a stunning radiant result. 

The really cool part about transparent colors is that you can cover over almost all of your painting and still see through to your details and designs of your art shining underneath.

Aside from the practical uses of transparent oil paints, they have a very important symbolic meaning. As artists, we should be transparent in our lives. We should take our pains and sufferings and turn them into beautiful and inspiring works that uplift others who are experiencing the pains that we have. We have such power and should be responsible with how we wield it. I challenge you to take a look at your own life and contemplate what areas you could be more transparent in and incorporate that into a painting. Be courageous and vulnerable and you will change the world with your art. 

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Dalia Milan

16 Year Old Professional Artist

Oil Paints

Milan Art Institute
Milan Art Institute

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