Using Oil Sticks to Create Dramatic Effects

I’ve been experimenting with the use of oil sticks to achieve interesting highlights and effects.  Because of the sticks’ thick, pasty consistency, you can use them like crayons to create an impasto. Combining oil sticks with other media – watercolor, acrylic and oil paints -- opens up all kinds of possibilities.

In these water-based works, I applied oil sticks under highly-diluted paint.  I then blotted the surface with paper towels or a soft cloth to soften the look and blend and enhance the effected areas.  The oil sticks acted as a resist in achieving the ethereal sky in “First Night” (see image on right: mixed media, 10.5 x 13.5, 1014)  In some areas,  I dipped the oil sticks directly into a medium or solvent to achieve unique marks like the light reflecting off the buildings and icy surfaces in “Winter Glow” (see image on left: mixed media, 13.5 x 10.5, 2014)

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Coreopsis Clouds, watercolor, 24 x 20 matted, 2017


Cactus Blossom III, acrylic on silk, 12 x 12

2017  See more of the Cactus Blossom series on Small Works page.

Check out Bonnie's Blog for News, Techniques, Inspiration

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01/13/16 Richard Diebenkorn-Inspired Art

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4/14/14 Light-Inspired Art: Small Jewels

1/23 Prismatic Effects of Water-Based Media

1/05/14  Using Oil Sticks to Create Dramatic Effects

10/31/13 On Studying Other Artists

10/19 Unintended Consequences Using Water-based media

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