Invention of Oil Paints
From the time of Jan van Eyck who is known to have produced a stable oil mixture that could be used to bind mineral pigments, the popularity of oil as medium of painting has increased day by day. There is no painter of reckoning who has not used the oil as medium of painting.
Here are some of the best paintings done by the master artists using oil paints.
Jean Corot: Perspective Painting Space and Fleeting Effects
When an artist takes his or her brushes and stands before canvass for painting a landscape, he or she keeps a definite clue about the scene in mind. The artists love the nature and show it by painting.
While painting a landscape the pivotal issue is how to depict the feeling of space. It is not a design where the viewers would be looking for flat surfaces of trees and mountains and rocks. They would expect feeling that they are standing with the objects painted on canvas; they would love to feel the essence of the scene, its depth, its volume, and its atmosphere. The landscape painters keep all these factors in their mind; they would follow all the conventions.
The sketches, the colours in all the hues, and the possibilities of endless tonal values: these would be the raw material to the artist’s disposal. Here in the above neo classical painting, a French artist Jean-Baptiste Camille Corot has tried creating the real feel of the atmosphere. By keeping the focal point at a long distance, he had succeeded in creating the sense of depth in the painting. The brightness and tonal values of the browns in foreground, then the eye-catching green, and finally the neat blue create a strong sense of space. On looking at the painting, from a distance, we can see the aerial space embedded in canvas.
An expert artist, desiring to make an immediate place for the artwork in the hearts of the viewers, would concentrate on the foreground. He or she would make the foreground, the area of near vicinity, a strongly painted region. By putting emphasis on the foreground, the artist creates a sense of space in the mind of the viewers, leading their eyes to travel further and further. The existence of light and the colours of the sky, with or without clouds, would create the feeling of those transitory aspects. The arrangement of trees, farms, the flowing rivers, and mountains help creating the sense of recession. In aggregate, all these factors would lead the viewers to conceive the whole scene, feel themselves within the same, and get enjoyed. (Image courtesy Wikimedia Commons)
Salvador Dali (1904 -1989), a Spanish artist, was one of the most skilled artists of twentieth century who used the potentials of oil colours. he produced some of the best results. Though viewers might find his images striking and the shapes he painted looked bizarre; Dali had invented a brand new style of painting. He he belonged to a group of the artists known as surrealists. and carved out his individual space.
Frida Kahlo : Were we to name one woman painter, certainly she would be Frida. Such was her artistic skill, so strong was her depiction of facial expressions. She had done, perhaps, maximum self-portraits. If we closely look at the paintings done by Frida Kahlo we would not miss seeing the use of vibrant colours.
George Seurat was the artists who made the technique of pointillism so popular. He applied the various theories of colours to create optical unification of the colours. he used the contrasting colours in such a skillful manner that it would form a single hue in the eyes of viewers. He preferred his own style of painting, the pointillism, over the regular brush strokes. He used the oil colours in a way that his technique would make the colours more brilliant and the painting a vivid one.
Lucian Freud was the painter who painted marvelous artworks by using impasto style of painting. This painting technique is suitable when an artist is using oil paint. Oil paints are relatively thick and they take more drying time. Moreover impasto has created a new type of relationship between the hues of the colours and their physical thickness. In a broader sense, this impasto technique is advancement in the field of spatial discoveries, creating relationship with the artworks and the viewers' eyes.
The manner in which a viewer responds to colour or colour mixing is quite a wide subject. But the colours painted with oil have enchanting effects; that's an unbeatable argument. In modern time, too, the paintings in oil are as current as they were in past. Since the use of oil in painting became a common aspect, the artists have found the painting in oil more convenient and perhaps superior to other mediums. Artists find oil more convenient medium, as the pigments suspended in it dry slowly, giving them longer time to manipulate the colours. (Images Courtesy By John William Godward (1861–1922) Description British painter Date of birth/death 9 August 1861(1861-08-09) 13 December 1922(1922-12-13) Location of birth Wimbledon, London, England (Art Renewal Center Museum, image 11138) [Public domain], from Wikimedia Commons)