Which Painting Mediums to Use, Pros of Walnut Oil and How to Paint “Fat Over Lean” Without Solvents | The Cave of Apelles

Have you ever wondered which painting medium you should use? David Molesky explains the pros and cons of clove, poppy, walnut and linseed oil and how you can combine them.

In this video you will learn about:

The logic of the color of an oil and its properties. Light to dark equals

  • soft film to hard film
  • slow to quick drying
  • What a “more fatty oil” means
  • The argument for Walnut oil
  • Clove oil to delay drying
  • How to heat treat Walnut oil

    Lean to fat with walnut oil:

  • How to paint leant to fat with Walnut oil & no solvents
  • What chalk type to use in the ground and painting medium
  • Applying a lean «imprematura» of oil and chalk to paint wet in wet in it
  • Adding Green earth for an impasto «grisaille» start of your painting
  • David demonstrates starting a Green earth impasto layer with chalk-based medium
  • Mixing your own paint with a palette knife
  • Adding Aluminum stearate to make the oil thicker

▶️ Full video (1 hour 14 min): https://patreon.com/caveofapelles
🎵 Full audio: https://caveofapelles.com/podcast

Fergus Ryan
Shaun Roberts
Matthias Proy
Eivind Josten
Børge Moe


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  • Apelles was asked why he touched and retouched his pictures with so much care, to which he replied:
    "I paint for eternity"