My White Turned Into a Brick!



  • edited April 2013
    Sue said....
    My only worry with a white that stays open for days on end... how long does the painting take to dry? Way, way longer? I've gone to putting my auctions up on ebay at 10 days and still have to tell the buyer, sorry, it's not dry yet. But I guess that's better than having white that's unworkable.

    Sue... since the Classic Artist Oils is the only white I use with SDM I can not tell you if it drys slower or not. But I can tell you it is the last color to dry on my palette... and of course how thickly you apply your paint and where you live are other considerations. I would say that 12-14 days most paintings are dry to the touch.
    It is a wonderful buttery white ... so great to work with.
  • hmm, thank you Shirley. I will have to try that.
  • Graciella Did you solve the problem with Michael Harding?...

    Maria, sorry for delay responding. Yes, I am doing ok with the Michael Harding Linseed Titanium White No. 2.

  • Gary, my experimentation would say that Michael Harding White is comparable to Utrecht in your experiment. Thank you for doing the video! My next batch of white will be Classic or Gamblin.
  • I hope I do not seem stupid, but I really don't understand what ya'll are trying to do. Is it that you don't want the whites to never really dry? If anything I am wishing my paints, white especially to dry faster, not slower without using any driers. I am more like Kingston. I paint rather fast, I buy paints (in tubes) in bulk. Like Utrecht White, I buy a case of 12 tubes at a time and never had a problem of any kind. I make sure caps are on tight and not cross threaded. I reload my palette each morning. Some might think this wasteful, but trust me there is very little left on the palette and I do not want any "flaking" from semi dried paint.

    I understand Mark's method uses a slow drying medium to slow the the drying and brush ability, but to much of any medium is a bad idea. Mark has worked this out,and found a stable and usable mix. The more mediums you mix in especially slow driers, you are asking for problems later on. I know of a painting here in Arizona (extremely dry weather), that feels dry to the touch, but in places it is "gummy" and you can scrape some up with a fingernail. A student of mine who became a friend, painted this piece over a year ago!!! He experimented with some slow drying mixtures and I am not sure what brand of paint, but this painting can never be exhibited for sale and will remain in a drying rack.

    Quality paint manufacturers have spent a lot of money, research and continue to do so to make stable and archival artists paints. There is a reason why it comes to you in tubes, or jars as it does. I would strongly recommend talking to Robert Gamblin, (he does answer emails with questions about paint and mediums) Also a great source of information is the makers of Rublev paints in Utah or Nevada (I think, but will get some links for you). There is a newer paint maker of high quality artist oils and watercolor in the Carolina's who I hear is great for information also. I think the name is Blue Ridge or something like that, again I will check. But last but not least you have a excellent resource right here with Mark Carder. Please understand I support Mark and his teaching methods and in making a top quality paint manufacturer and wish him all the success they desire.That being said also, realize I am "old school" as is popular to say today. I do not believe in adding anything other than turps or Mineral Spirits which evaporate out of the paints rather quickly. Small amounts of either slow or quick drying medium is maybe okay and needed if the colors are thinned to the point of near breakdown of the paint binders. I am not a chemist, nor do I play one on TV, but I have read and worked with oil colors over half of my life. I don't know it all or claim to, but I have never had problems with paint right out of the tube whether in painting the picture or years later. I used archival top quality materials and do not change the mixtures unless absolutely needed. I have mentioned using Walnut Oil (M.Graham) if I need to oil out an area. Read David Gray's blog on this. He does exactly the same thing as I do and even use the same cosmetic sponges to wipe off as much medium as possible and still do the oiling out technique.

    One final thing and I only mention this as an example. This week, starting Monday morning, I have started, painted and finished 7, 8x10's 9x12's, a 10x12 and a 8x12. They are sitting in drying racks and I will probably put a light coat of retouch on them tomorrow. This in 4 days and I am in no particular hurry. I just need some inventory of small paintings for galleries. Two are single flowers the others are all still lifes. Today I have already sketched out (with paint on panels) two landscapes. One 9x12 and one 16x22. I will start painting the 9x12 as soon as I finish my breakfast and finish it today. I will have a wash on the 16x22 to start on tomorrow. None of this would be possible with adding slow drying mediums. If nothing else I would have no place to store this many painting waiting for them to dry. Again, this is nothing negative about Mark's methods at all. Remember mine is the same, just without the medium. I am willing to bet a lot of the problems ya'll are having would disappear if you did not add more medium than Mark recommends or none at all. Just a semi educated 40 years of experience opinion. Try it or not. Your choice.
  • I understand what you mean @AZPainter the first portrait I did in January still has to dry wel I think because was the wrong white!
    ... I have experienced a lot in recent times, for now I continue with portraits and I realized that I can work in three ways.
    1 - Mark's method where I need one step only , since the density and viscosity of the color obtained with the SDM (stand oil and original Venetian turpentine) covers in a single brushstroke and the maximum some retouches are required
    2 - I create the base with white and transparent red oxide plus TURP and then proceed with the oil paint diluted with very little medium (I use an eyedropper).
    3 - Using SDM to oil out the area and then work with the color without medium or a few drops if necessary.
    With the last two systems I realized that I get the effect I want, I have no problems and the color dries uniformly, brilliant and relatively fast... but also I paint very fast, the last portrait I posted in the challange chiaroscuro 'I've done pretty much in one day!
  • I thought they stopped selling zinc white or is that just in the states?
  • Not that I am aware of Chas. Last time I was in the Utrecht store here, they had a rack full of Zinc White, Titanium White, Uthrecht White ( a combo of zinc and Titanium), Flake White and Flemish White . This was about a month ago. I just looked at their big catalog and they have it listed in both 37ml tubes and 150ml tubes.
  • Did someone used with SDM Daler Rowney, Georgian oil colour for artists? Thanks. 8-|
  • I am in the middle of working out the titanium issue, will report when I am finished. I am making titanium white from scratch and have been for a week.

    Hi Mark, have you found something that would work with the Rembrant TW #118. I have the same problem as everyone else and I am wondering if I should keep adding SDM to the paint or is it futile (ending up with paint that will never dry) ?
    I have been looking at the Artist Classic Oil that Shirley has recommended but I would like to see if I can use what I have first. I have enough Titanium White in the house to paint the White House. :)) OK, I may be exaggerating a bit :D
  • Lucie

    Mix as much TW as you need for the one painting session with your accumulated TW.
    You can use SDM or just plain old linseed, or plain old stand oil.
    A fresh batch for each session will soon use up excess TW and by then the issue may be resolved.

  • Thanks Denis, this is what I have been doing so far. My painting time is limited and I was hoping not having to remix my colors every day. I'm not a pro and it takes me forever to mix my colors. It's even more laborious to remix the exact same color the next day.
  • Lucie

    The problem, as you described it, was that your white was turning to a brick.
    The colors are not having this problem, so you shouldn't have to remix these every day.

  • Thanks Denis, I will try that.
  • I can confirm Rembrandt Titanium White (Linseed) #118 will turn into a brick.
    All my other colors are Winsor Newton, maybe I should try the Winsor Newton white?
    I still have a couple of tubes of Rembrandt, so I will be mixing with SDM as I go.
  • johnw

    Sorry, the W&N TW sets up like a block of rubber with SDM.

  • Thanks Denis, will mix per session.
    I guess only a chemist could figure that one out.
  • edited August 2014
    I realize that my recent experience is many months after the tread of this discussion started, however, it too had the same experience of having used the SDM formula with M Graham titanium white - resulting in a thick "paste" which got worse over the next few days. Previous I had no problems, so I thought I may have done something wrong with my SDM mixing ratios, thus I tried it again and got the same "paste" result within two days. I then took half of the second "paste" and mixed it a with increasing amounts of M Graham walnut oil (basically the same as linseed oil) until I arrived at a ketchup thickness. I have not no problems with this new mixture. Hope this may help someone. Ralph
  • Ralph

    If you take any medium/pigment ratio beyond 20% or 1 in 5 you run the risk of the paint being unable to form a skin and harden properly. Tube paint already has an oil component added in the manufacture so it don't take much to push it past the 20% level.

    The risks are a sticky surface, wrinkling, sagging, delamination.

Sign In or Register to comment.