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Old 30-03-07, 12:43 AM
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mona mona is offline
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Default when to use oil with egg tempera

Late-entering this topic, I scanned over this now 4-pages of post from Miss Pixel's question. This is really risking stating the obvious, but since no one else put it this way so far, egg tempera is overall a water-based medium, and distilled water (or I have also used tap water with no ill effects over 30 years) is the preferred overall additive.....simple as that.

Another tip I learned from my Russian Byzantine icon painting classes. A handy additive which also preserves the medium with no ill effect is cheap white wine (about $6 a bottle kind). If you use this, use the proportion you would have used to add water. Normally I make one weaker, and one stronger solution of egg yolk and with one tablespoon of water per egg yolk;
one with two tablespoons of water per egg yolk (variations depending on size of yolk of course). So if you did it with wine, I would say add one tablespoon of wine and add distilled water as needed from there.

This being said, I was interested to hear everyone's comments about what kind of oil can be tried in egg-oil emulsions, in particular walnut oil, since I was reading on one artist's website about how he favoured walnut oil in his oil painting medium.

Re: preservatives, such as white wine....some have also used vinegar, which in my opinion is just too stinky and unpleasant, besides which, eggs come cheap, so I always allow myself to crack open another whenever freshness is desired. For a day's painting, I also prefer ice cubes in a dish with a flat bottom, and sit my jars of egg medium in that,
replenishing the cubes throughout the day. No smell entailed in that whatever!

One more thought for Miss P. or anyone starting advice is to get a good manual on the medium which answers lots of questions all at once for you. I think Koo Schadler's manual is great, and I recommend it in all my lectures on egg tempera...also Michael Bergt has one available, which I am sure is equally valuable, as does Altoon Sultan (Altoon's has some great color pictures). I also think Robert Vickrey's book still really rocks after all these years if you can obtain a copy of his out of print "New Techniques in Egg Tempera". It was my first manual starting out in the medium in 1976.
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Old 30-03-07, 12:51 AM
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Salamander Salamander is offline
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Thanks Mona, I'll try the wine.
I too favor walnut oil with egg, it's slippery-er.
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Old 30-03-07, 12:57 AM
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Bert Congdon Bert Congdon is offline
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Good for you Mona. I completely agree with you. Actually Rob answered her question with the first answer in one word. "Never."
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