Skip to Main Content
Sign In
Toggle Navigation

Open the Navigation Management window, which can be used to view the full current branch of the menu tree, and edit it.

  • Instagram
  • Facebook

MITRA Forum Question Details

Image Picker for Section 0


  • Primer soaking up oil paintApproveRejectUn-ApproveSubscribeUn-Unsubscribe
    Question asked 2018-08-23 15:31:48 ... Most recent comment 2018-08-31 12:46:41
    Oil Paint Sizes and Adhesives

    ​I have a piece of dibond that was sanded and had 2 layers of Bullseye 1-2-3 primer on it and then an old acrylic underpainting for a painting I never started.

    I primed the dibond again with 3 coats of Bullseye 1-2-3 primer over the old acrylic painting and lightly sanded the last layer with very fine grit sandpaper. I then painted a undiluted acryic underpainting with fluid consistency.

    After a few days I painted with oil paint thinned with pure walnut oil and found that around 4-6 hours later parts of the paint were dry and non-shiny as though the oil has been sucked down into the primer/acrylic underpainting.

    In this case I am guessing that the (in total) 5 layers of bulleye 1-2-3 primer resulted in a too absorbant surface, but I expected the acrylic paint to seal the primer to some extent. But it seemed to have no effect judging by the speed the oil paint was sucked into the primer.

    Is this perhaps due to the acrylic resin used in the paint or a property common to all acrylic paints due to their open surface nature? (in contrast to the closed nature of oil paints).. Are all acrylic paints absorbant to oil?


Answers and Comments

  • EditDeleteModerator Answer

    Sorry for the late reply, we just finished our week of graduate art conservation oral presentations and defenses.

    I am not sure what happened in this case other than apparently the five coats of Bullseye 1-2-3 primer created a very absorbent surface. I have encountered similar effects when painting an oil imprimatura on a true gesso ground on a panel. The imprimatura can become very matte in a short period of time. I combat this to a degree by sizing the gesso before applying the imprimatura.

    I certainly would have thought that the acrylic dispersion paint would have lessened the absorbency of the primer but I have never experimented with this combination of materials. I do not think that this effect is common to all acrylic dispersion paints but perhaps other moderators have a comment.

    Brian Baade
    2018-08-26 17:06:29
  • ApproveRejectUn-ApproveUser Comment

    ​No need to worry about the delay, I'm grateful for everyone here giving their time for free to help us out :)

    It was a shame it happened, I didn't dare use that surface agaib. It does remind me that for all of scientific advances in the creation of art there still seems an awful lot of unknowns about things like this.

    2018-08-27 15:21:16
  • ApproveRejectUn-ApproveUser Comment

    ​Just to add to this, I did a quick test which although not scientific was useful.

    I applied several different products to a normal A4 sheet of printer paper. Once dry for 24 hours I applied one drop (with an eyedropper) of walnut oil to the centre of each section. Over the course of an hour I observed the effects.

    The fastest soaking in was of course a control of walnut directly on the paper.

    Next to that was a layer of white acrylic paint (Acrylicos Vallejo Acrylic Goache range) which the oil started to soak in before the hour was up.

    W&N Galeria Gesso and W&N Professional Clear Gesso were a lot better.

    The best I saw was GAC100 by Golden - no soak in after one hour.

    This confirmed to me that the acrylic paint I was using wasn't blocking the absorbtion of the oil into the primer underneath very much.

    2018-08-31 12:46:41

Page Settings and MetaData:
(Not Shown on the Page)
Page Settings
MetaData for Search Engine Optimization
MITRA Forum Question Details
This page cannot be accessed until you accept the Terms of Use, which can be found here.
Please note that this Terms of Use system uses cookies. If you have cookies disabled you will not be able to accept the agreement. If you delete our cookies you will need to re-accept the Terms of Use.
  • The Department of Art Conservation
  • 303 Old College
  • University of Delaware
  • Newark, DE 19716, USA
  • Phone: 302-831-3489