Oil Paint

Shop our huge selection of oil paints and sets. Find artist-grade oil colors and student-grade oil paints, plus water mixable oil colors, alkyds, and oil paint sticks.

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Frequently Asked Questions

  • What are oil paints made of?

    Oil paints are comprised of pigments suspended in a binder, generally linseed oil. Depending on the manufacturer, other ingredients may be added as well, such as stabilizers or dryers.

  • Why choose oil paints over other types of paint?

    Oil paints are one of the great classic media. They have been used for hundreds of years and have stood the test of time with great durability and steadfast color.

    Oils are beloved by artists for many reasons. They offer great versatility. Oils can be very opaque, or they can be thinned with a solvent to varying levels of transparency. They have a slow-drying time, during which their colors do not change, allowing the artist to rework, correct, and even scrape off areas of paint.

  • What does "Direct Painting" mean?

    This means that the paint is applied in one layer. A good way of thinking about this technique is that a painting can be completed in one sitting, and does not require waiting time before adding another layer.

  • What does "Indirect Painting" mean?

    This is a more complex method of painting with oils. It is also thought of as a more traditional approach. Here the artist applies many layers of paint, adjusting the opacity of the layers to create different effects. Indirect painting can result in very luminous tones and colors.

  • What does "Fat Over Lean" mean?

    This is a traditional rule of oil painting. "Fat" paint has more oil in it, and "lean" paint has less oil in it. As artists paint layers onto paintings, they make each progressive layer "fatter" than the one before by adding more medium. The more oil the paint has the more flexible it is. When the overpainting is more flexible than the underpainting, the paint is less likely to crack as it dries.