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  1. #31
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    Hum, can I just say something?

    There seems to be a lot of expense being gone to here for someone just starting out. I'm starting out in oils and I'm using an old plastic palette I used for acrylics and a bunch of old tubes of Winton oils I "borrowed" from college years ago and they're working fine so far.

    Maybe spending lots of money on paint and palettes is less important than getting lots of surfaces to paint on and lots of paint to slap on them.

    Anyway, just my two bob's worth.

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    I do see your point Candra. My two cents is that if someone comes on here and creates
    a thread on these forums, they are wanting advice from the guys who paint for a living. The problem
    is, low quality tools and materials may lead to frustration for a new user who is closing himself off to
    good quality tools that are only a bit more expensive.

    Maybe I'm imagining things as I have not been oil painting too long myself, but the difference in application
    and mixing of cheap oils versus established brands was quite large. Both in consistency and vibrancy of color.

    You do get some pro's that compromise as well. Gurney for example stated that he puts more emphasis on high
    quality brushes than he does on high quality paint, which surprised me. Having said that though, I don't think
    he paints with the boxed-with-a-canvas set that I see in some stationary stores here.

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    I have no idea what a boxed with a canvas set is. Is that like the beginner sets of paint and brushes you can get but with a canvas thrown in too?

    And yeah, I'm not trying to nay say anyone in here because I know there are professionals and experts with a lot more experience than me. I'm just giving my own angle as another beginner, and that I havent had any major problems with my cheap equipment yet so maybe the op doesn't need to panic and rush out and buy all this stuff they might not need.

    As for me? I'll probably work my way through several different types of brush, paint, canvas, palette etc before I settle on what works best for me. But right now, I'm just using what I've already got rather than spending money I don't have on materials I'm not knowledgeable enough about yet to ken whether they're good or not, you know?

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    Quote Originally Posted by ebi View Post
    How do you transport the freezer paper in your backpack?

    Do you keep it in a box? Won't the paint stick to the lid? (I can't imagine just putting the freezer paper in your backpack as is )
    I usually use acrylics when I take the backpack, because I'm not going to be transporting wet panels easily either. So by the time I'm moving everything is dry. But if I was using oils I'd probably just tape the paper to the bottom of a box.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Candra H View Post
    . I'm starting out in oils and I'm using an old plastic palette I used for acrylics and a bunch of old tubes of Winton oils I "borrowed" from college years ago and they're working fine so far..
    Yes, but you, uh, "borrowed" the paint. If someone is going to actually buy paint, why buy crap paint that may be frustrating to use when you can buy decent paint for only slightly more money? Seriously, it's not like anyone is saying go buy the most expensive artisanal paint and sable brushes, just reasonably professional grade. Decent supplies can make a difference in ease of use. I still remember struggling with horrible cheap inherited pastels and water colors in school and how much easier my assignments were when I finally went out and bought some real supplies...

    Where you can really cut costs in oil painting is in the material you paint on. For throwaway studies, anything with gesso on it will work. And what you use for a palette doesn't matter as long as it works for you and isn't awkward or annoying to use.

    I still recommend Utrecht paint. Good quality, low price. I used it all through my stone-broke student years, and still use it, because hey, it works.

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  9. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Candra H View Post
    I have no idea what a boxed with a canvas set is. Is that like the beginner sets of paint and brushes you can get but with a canvas thrown in too?

    And yeah, I'm not trying to nay say anyone in here because I know there are professionals and experts with a lot more experience than me. I'm just giving my own angle as another beginner, and that I havent had any major problems with my cheap equipment yet so maybe the op doesn't need to panic and rush out and buy all this stuff they might not need.

    As for me? I'll probably work my way through several different types of brush, paint, canvas, palette etc before I settle on what works best for me. But right now, I'm just using what I've already got rather than spending money I don't have on materials I'm not knowledgeable enough about yet to ken whether they're good or not, you know?
    Well, in the end, cheap materials are like cheap appliances. You get what you pay for and by your own admission, if I read your post correctly, you have not
    worked with enough decent materials yet to see what a difference they actually make. Not a dig at you btw.

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    I'll second Queenie's rec on Utrecht - good paint. For turp I only recommend Gamsol. ANd one of the most important things to own is a good turp container/brushwasher...the only one to get is Holbein...the medium size with three clips and the lid comes completely off.

    I'll add this last tip...equipment and materials are by far the easiest part of the process to control. Make it as easy on yourself as possible - struggling with a crap setup, poor tools and inferior materials only causes problems. Pros use what they use for reasons...because it makes things easier.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Candra H View Post
    And yeah, I'm not trying to nay say anyone in here because I know there are professionals and experts with a lot more experience than me.
    What the professionals and experts with a lot more experience than you are trying to do is hit the sweet spot between cost and quality. What you see as "a lot of expense going on" is nothing compared to what lots of beginners think or are told that they need. As somebody who has taught an introductory oil painting class for many years, I am more than well aware of art student budgets, and try my best to take that into account when recommending supplies. But I also know false economy, and when cutting corners can actually make things more difficult.


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    When I started back painting I bought stuff from the pound shop (I've since added stuff from elsewhere), but starting cheap doesn't mean you can't learn. You learn the limitations of your materials and how to work round them.

    £1 canvas, £1 paint (albeit acrylic), £1 brushes.




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    Quote Originally Posted by Star Eater View Post
    Having said that though, I don't think
    he paints with the boxed-with-a-canvas set that I see in some stationary stores here.
    Well I have to admit I have nothing exactly useful to contribute to this except BOXED WITH A CANVAS SETS ARE THE DEVIL.
    Those put me off for acrylics for a looong time because they were so horrible (no offense to my friend who gave me that box as a gift, she had no way of knowing) and similar thing happened with oils, since I bought a super-cheap-with-lots-of-colours box set of them and ugggggh (and I was also young, I didn't even realize there were different qualities of paints and thought like "is this it, what") neither of them even blended properly.

    In the end for my plein air oil painting course I ended up buying the Winton paints because all other art supply stores were closed, and my painting style for that course ended up being "use half of the whole paint tube in one painting to cover wet paint layers" so I guess I made off relatively okay that time.
    And those paints were so much better than the really cheap ones I had previously used...

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    Did anyone else, as a kid, ever have one of those watercolor sets where the paints were solid blocks that you dabbed your brush on?
    Still see those in stores. Good times.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Star Eater View Post
    Did anyone else, as a kid, ever have one of those watercolor sets where the paints were solid blocks that you dabbed your brush on?
    Still see those in stores. Good times.
    Yup yup yup. With the watery washed out colors. And then they all get munged together into mud because you keep using the brush on one color and then scrubbing it on another color pan and... yeeeeah. The scrubbing-to-pick-up-color would have totaled the brushes if they weren't the cheap dime store kind with the plastic bristles...

    Oh, and eventually the colors fall out of the pans and you have paint chips everywhere, of course. FUN TIMES.

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    Quote Originally Posted by QueenGwenevere View Post
    Yup yup yup. With the watery washed out colors. And then they all get munged together into mud because you keep using the brush on one color and then scrubbing it on another color pan and... yeeeeah. The scrubbing-to-pick-up-color would have totaled the brushes if they weren't the cheap dime store kind with the plastic bristles...

    Oh, and eventually the colors fall out of the pans and you have paint chips everywhere, of course. FUN TIMES.
    Oh shit, hahaha you just brought back a whole flood of memories. Yep, all true. But I remember getting a new set as a kid
    had a very distinct smell to them. The premise was always more exciting than the execution, but in the end a jumbo
    box of Crayola would come out tops.

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    I liked to make holes in the pans by scrubbing like that. My older sister (the resident artist) could never appreciate that though.



    Quote Originally Posted by Star Eater View Post
    Well, in the end, cheap materials are like cheap appliances. You get what you pay for and by your own admission, if I read your post correctly, you have not
    worked with enough decent materials yet to see what a difference they actually make. Not a dig at you btw.
    This kind of reminds me of when I first got into knitting. I got the cheapest acrylic yarn that I could get and the cheapest needles…. And it was just awful! I never finished anything that I knitted with those. It ended up a waste of money. But I did learn some things thanks to it.

    Then I found some slightly more expensive, but still affordable, 100% wool yarn and bamboo needles… and suddenly I was knitting so much, that I knit myself straight into four years of RSI (and counting) haha.

    I've since switched to a knitting machine by the way (and that's actually the same story, started with this horrible thing from the 50s that I got for 20 euro - made me want to pull my hair out- and ended up with a modern, one 15 times more expensive… but at least it gets used... and it gets used with joy!).

    But, that is also why I decided to trust the general opinion here on getting quality materials, even if they are a bit more expensive. At least I know I will use them. And luckily, with a few "sacrafices" here and there, they fit into my planned budget

    Quote Originally Posted by JeffX99 View Post
    I'll second Queenie's rec on Utrecht - good paint. For turp I only recommend Gamsol. ANd one of the most important things to own is a good turp container/brushwasher...the only one to get is Holbein...the medium size with three clips and the lid comes completely off.

    I'll add this last tip...equipment and materials are by far the easiest part of the process to control. Make it as easy on yourself as possible - struggling with a crap setup, poor tools and inferior materials only causes problems. Pros use what they use for reasons...because it makes things easier.
    I'll keep the brush washer in mind! Unfortunately I don't think it's very feasible for me to get oil paints from the US seeing that I'm from the Netherlands. But, if I ever get to the US I will definitely take a look at Utrecht’s paints!

    And yes… I just noticed how I need to create a better set up (… I only painted a little color scale and I got paint *everywhere* …table, light switch, elbow, books…. Because my workspace is so cramped).

    Quote Originally Posted by Black Spot View Post
    When I started back painting I bought stuff from the pound shop (I've since added stuff from elsewhere), but starting cheap doesn't mean you can't learn. You learn the limitations of your materials and how to work round them.

    £1 canvas, £1 paint (albeit acrylic), £1 brushes.

    Wow! You painted that with things from the pound shop? That is amazing.

    Today I ended up getting some cheap brushes, 55 cent canvasses and, I really just couldn't resist , I got 2 tiny, tiny van Gogh oil paints (it seems to be the *only* brand, cheap or expensive, that they sell in my town :/).

    I'm kind of glad that I got these things as well because… now I know the importance of the palette knife and why you shouldn't mix paint with a brush!

    And I'm really curious to see how the paints compared to Winsor & Newton’s.

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    Thumbs up

    For some reason I own the worlds smallest set of kiddie paint.
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    Utrecht and Holbein are both European though so....shouldn't be too tough!

    Edit: Correction...Utrecht is American and Holbein Japanese (see Elwell's post below).

    Last edited by JeffX99; November 2nd, 2012 at 08:29 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by JeffX99 View Post
    Utrecht and Holbein are both European though so....shouldn't be too tough!
    So far I haven't had any luck finding them…

    But I'll keep looking!

    Maybe I just need to find the correct Dutch word for brush washer.

    And, it doesn't help that “Utrecht”…like |”Scheveningen” (from Old Holland )is a big city here

    I'll accept this as a challenge to improve my Google skills.

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    Utrecht, despite the name, is an American company, and Holbein is Japanese. Rembrandt (artist's quality) and Van Gogh (student quality) paints are Dutch, however, they're made by Royal Talens in Appledoorn.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Flake View Post
    For some reason I own the worlds smallest set of kiddie paint.
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    Kill it before it has the chance to grow!

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    Quote Originally Posted by TinyBird View Post
    Kill it before it has the chance to grow!
    NO!!!!!! Many paint sets deserve death. And some that die deserve life. Can you give it to them? Then do not be too eager to deal out death in judgement.

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    Quote Originally Posted by karta tajba View Post
    People who are on a budget.
    Want to perhaps elaborate a bit?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Elwell View Post
    Utrecht, despite the name, is an American company, and Holbein is Japanese. Rembrandt (artist's quality) and Van Gogh (student quality) paints are Dutch, however, they're made by Royal Talens in Appledoorn.
    Thanks Tristan - did not know that! Just always assumed because of the names...

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    What about Gamblin? They're available in the UK.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Candra H View Post
    Maybe spending lots of money on paint and palettes is less important than getting lots of surfaces to paint on and lots of paint to slap on them.
    My glass palette was four bucks at the hardware store Able to be re-used for a long time, scrapes clean with a palette knife/razor blade even if I let paint sit on it for ages... I don't know how much more economical that is. Instead of throwing out plastic because it's too scratched up, you just reuse the same palette. Only downside is you can't hold it up, but for price/quality/ease of use, I seriously don't know how you could get cheaper than a sheet of glass.

    The paint thing is CHEAPER in the long run to buy better paint than student grade paint, and not only that you learn faster/more correctly what mixing/thinning should feel like with good paint than with student paint.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alice Herring View Post
    What about Gamblin? They're available in the UK.
    I think they're a little overpriced, and they're probably more so in Europe since they're imported, but the overall quality is fine. I certainly wouldn't pay more for them than for equivalent European brands, though, unless it was for a specific pigment or mixture.


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    Quote Originally Posted by TinyBird View Post
    Kill it before it has the chance to grow!
    Too late, looks like someone fed it after midnight..
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    On the actual topic though, totally agree with buying decent grade paint.
    Artist grade only costs a couple of quid more than the student lines so you may as well get decent stuff.

    Glass pallettes are ace, I got mine free from a friendly glazier who was fixing windows in our block of flats. Easy to clean, last forever unless you drop them.
    Paint the back of the glass a middle grey or back it with grey card.

    Regarding brush washers, if you don't need to travel around with it, you can MacGyver a ghetto one from jam jars or whatever.
    http://gurneyjourney.blogspot.co.uk/...sh-washer.html

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    Quote Originally Posted by Elwell View Post
    I think they're a little overpriced, and they're probably more so in Europe since they're imported, but the overall quality is fine. I certainly wouldn't pay more for them than for equivalent European brands, though, unless it was for a specific pigment or mixture.
    Really? I found them cheaper than the W&N professional brand. It's why I didn't go that way except for when the Gamblin was out of a needed color. (30 dollars for a red. Oi.) I didn't think about the importing though. :/

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    dpaint is offline Registered User Level 16 Gladiator: Spartacus' Retiarii
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    Quote Originally Posted by Star Eater View Post
    Did anyone else, as a kid, ever have one of those watercolor sets where the paints were solid blocks that you dabbed your brush on?
    Still see those in stores. Good times.
    I still use a Winsor Newton set like that. The closed kit without paper is about the size of a computer mouse. Everything is in it, water container, brush washer, brush, mixing areas and paint. I use a watercolor block or a moleskin Sketchbook.

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    ^
    That's cool.

    It's like something Q Branch would have cooked up if they'd ever expected James Bond to have to sketch in watercolours.

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