Magic White – make your own

You can make your own magic white or liquid white oil paint

Magic White – make your own

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Magic white or liquid white is oil paint that has been thinned to make it flow off the brush.
Do not use linseed oil to thin your oil paint.
You can thin all your colors.
When painting wet-on-wet it is best to have plenty of paint of different colors ready to pick up with the brush or knife
Thin oil paint is often called Magic White or Liquid White.

Here is a simple method to make your own Magic White or Liquid White oil paint.

For more than 40 years I have made my own mixture and kept my oil paint in plastic bags sealed in an airtight, light proof tin (light will make your paint go hard!).
I now days find some of my students struggling with thick oil paint.
View the short VIDEO

If your oil paint is too thick and will not flow off the brush than you should take a little time to prepare your common colors (About 5 of them) by putting them into little plastic bags. The bags are about 150×150 mm or 6″ square. After adding a thinning medium keep them in a sealed container ready for when you need them. (All colors can go together in the one sealed container)
…. NOTE :- With wet-on-wet you do need to have all your paints at the same viscosity (Runny- ness)
If you try to paint a thick color over a thin color the brush will pick up paint rather than put paint down.
I do like my oil and acrylic paints to be like a thick cream or you might say like toothpaste in consistency.
Acrylic paint is most often ready to use without thinning, except you might need to add a drop of water to paint fine lines.
Oil paint often needs thinning, possibly 90% of the time for it to flow like a liquid.
This short video will show you how to make Magic White or Liquid White – whatever you want to call it. Len’s White? or Blue? or Purple?

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by Len Hend


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  1. Hi Len what is kerosene? I have put paint in cling film and clise it completely yet it still dries. Why is that?

    1. Hi Kevin – kerosene is (I think) called paraffin oil, many years ago we ran our tractor on it, is commonly used in lamps.
      Cling film can slow drying but I don’t think it is good with every paint as it might even melt with some thinners.
      Lately I have found some big (A4) siz bags – plastic with a fancy zip closer – I have been putting oil brushes in the bags with a dribble of kerosene and they are still soft the next day or so – you might fit a small palette in with a bit of experimenting and put a dribble of kero to keep the air out – I haven’t tried it yet.

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