Turpentine

Slump 12 x 12 by Jennie Rosenbaum
Slump 12 x 12 by Jennie Rosenbaum

I’ve been oil painting for years now. Perhaps too many. It’s my favorite medium, I love the blending and the drying time, the luminosity, translucency and the feel. I even love the stinky reek of turps – which I’ve always been rather sloppy with. Lately, however, I’ve noticed that when I paint I often feel quite sick afterwards. Dizzy, nauseous and itchy, with a raw nose, throat and headaches. it all came to a head the other day when I started cleaning my palette (which I really should do more often!) and I was sick all day and the next day afterwards. I know not all of it can be attributed to my disability and turpentine allergies can build in the system over time. Now, Liam has never liked the smell of turps anyway (the odorless is worse though, much worse for both of us) so it’s time something was done. I have enough poisons and problems with my system without adding further ones to the mix, I wanted to upgrade to better quality paints anyway so today I took the plunge and ordered some Windsor and Newton Artisan Oil Paints.

these are legitimate oils in every sense, but the oil in them has been treated to accept water rather than repel it, meaning that they can be cleaned with soap and water. apparently they handle exactly the same way. I also chose to order only safe pigment bases, I will probably add the more poisonous ones later but for now I want to give my system a break. plus ordering from overseas, the heavy metal based pigments can create a problem – I probably need to buy them here. I will post a review when they arrive and I have a chance to play but for now I can breathe a sigh of relief.

oh, and try to ignore the Rosenbaum part of my brain that is telling me to quickly use up everything I have left!

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