Ooh I love oil paints. They are rich in color, creamy in texture and the slow drying time makes it easy to come back to a painting. Although those wonderful things can come with some downfalls. They can be messy and toxic to work with, but no worries, I will share with you how I got around these two major downfalls.
The toxic part around oil paints is what challenged my love for them. Toxic relationships are never good.
What makes oils toxic, you ask? The pigments or in other words the color particles can be toxic. Some of them contain lead, mercurial sulfides, cobalt, and cadmium...all toxic to your health and children! The solvents (what makes your paint thinner and cleans brushes) turpentine or mineral spirits are both toxic to your health.
How do I get around these pitfalls so my family and I can be safe? I use water-mixable oil paints. I still get the rich creamy texture, color, and slow drying time but I can use water instead of turpentine or mineral spirits. This has a bonus too! I can clean with water and soap when I get a little crazy with my paints and find them all over me...and everything else. You will not be trading quality for the safety either. All that has changed is technology, although for some it may be hard to embrace, for safety it's worth getting over.
Always look for the symbols below on your paint tubes. If one of these are not on the paint, don't buy it.
Oil Painting LessonsIf you have ever held a brush in your mouth, used your fingers to paint with, smelt turpentine or mineral spirits, or gotten paint everywhere including your face...you were exposed to toxic chemicals and it's just better to not have to worry about it.