Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

You can send an email to if you have questions about how to use this forum.

Impasto Medium

        I saw this really beautiful painting in my local museum that had real thick application of paint impasto style. I decided to give it a shot. I bought all these different palette knives to use etc... I was going to use the paint straight from the tub when I realized artists probably use a medium to extend the paint... I tried doing some research online, but there really isn't a whole lot of information on the subject... anyways, i bought wax by gamblin and tried that... but it really mats the painting...and there is this coat of wax on my painting... not exactly the look i wanted... anyone know what a really good impasto medium I should use? 

Mark A


  • SummerSummer -
    edited April 2017
    @Markalex777 ; Mark, Years ago I painted with a half dozen tubes of Winsor & Newton artist grade straight out of the tubes onto the canvas that I had carefully prepared--alla prima.  I didn't use any medium, not even turpentine.  I couldn't bring myself to varnish it because I liked the surface gloss after it dried.  You know how beautiful an unvarnished painting can look at first.  Demand for the painting was more than I expected so I was tempted to paint more like it but didn't.  The thing - paint film - was indestructible as I recall. And, I did end up selling it years later.  Wouldn't hurt to try something like this on a small canvas.  It looked like I had used an impasto medium.  :)  Summer
  • markalex777


    Coming from the Italian for ‘dough,’ impasto is a particularly popular technique for exploring texture. By applying thick layers of paint with the right brush and Mediums, brush strokes can remain plainly visible and create an highly textured effect. Rembrandt, for instance, employed this technique to pick out jewels on a costume; while Van Gogh used it for expressive purposes. 

    When seeking an impasto effect, Liquin Oleopasto adds texture, thickens rapidly and increases transparency. Liquin Impasto Medium, too, is designed to retain crisp texture. Whether you use Liquin Oleopasto or Liquin Impasto, your painting will be touch-dry in 1-6 days, making both Mediums particularly useful when layering for an ultra-thick impasto effect. 

  • @Markalex777 ; Mark, This tutorial not only backs up the result of my own experiment, but also may give you some ideas you will want to try in your search for the perfect impasto.  Cheers!  Summer

  • If you want glossy finish but easy to handle paint then you can go for Maroger medium. This is slightly liquidy than the heavy Rublev mediums above.

    There is also this Italian Varnish from Rublev, this cheaper than Maroger and does not contain mastic varnish as in Maroger. Some people think that Maroger might be harmful.

    Effect is like this:

  • @Summer I have yet to upgrade to artist grade paints, but I will give it a try one day :) Did you use brushes or just palette knife? 

  • @Summer I have yet to upgrade to artist grade paints, but I will give it a try one day :) Did you use brushes or just palette knife? 

    As I was experimenting, I used both, but mostly palette knives.  The combined effects were interesting.
Sign In or Register to comment.