What is Special About Oil Painting

What is Special About Oil Painting

Painting on canvas became popular during the early Renaissance era, as Italian artists began to use canvas as their medium for oil painting. The wooden panels that were used previously became less and less popular as the popularity of canvas painting grew. Today, the majority of contemporary artists will create canvas oil paintings rather than the alternative mediums. These are high quality paintings that many people will invest in, as the value of a classic painting never drops. Most well-known paintings are created using oil on canvas, and a large amount of people own canvas oil paintings to decorate their home.

Examples of Canvas Oil Paintings

'French Madonna with Angels' (1410): This beautiful painting is currently on display in Berlin's Gem'ldegalerie museum, as it's recognized as one of the oldest surviving canvas oil paintings.

'The Blue Boy' (1770): Created by Thomas Gainsborough in 1770, 'The Blue Boy' is an incredible portrait painting made with oil on canvas. The emphasis is clearly directed at the man in the painting, and it's not one to be forgotten.

-'Mona Lisa' (1503-06): Leonardo de Vinci created the 'Mona Lisa' in 1503to 1506, and it is now the world's most famous painting. The 'Mona Lisa' is recognized throughout the world as one of the most beautiful paintings ever created, as it also the most expensive painting in the world.

-'Reply of the Zaporozhian Cossacks' (1880-1891): This beautiful painting took about 11 years for Ilya Repin to create. A perfect example of oil on canvas, 'Reply of the Zaporozhian Cossacks' is a painting that depicts a scene from a specific Russian legend. The artist paid close attention to the details in an effort to make it authentic to what happened in that moment in time, according to the legend.

-'The Elevation of the Cross' (1610-11): Peter Paul Rubens created the canvas oil painting, 'The Elevation of the Cross' in 1610, and finished it in 1611. This is an excellent painting that displays a symbolic message, with a good deal of detail and shading effects to make the painting look realistic.
  • Copenhagen Painting
    Oil on Canvas
    Size (WxH): 16" x 12" inch
  • Secret Treasures Painting
    Secret Treasures
    Oil on Canvas
    Size (WxH): 72" x 38" inch
  • Teach Me To Dance Painting
    Teach Me To Dance
    Oil on stretched Canvas
    Size (WxH): 24" x 30" inch
  • Lune In Cielo Painting
    Lune In Cielo
    Mixed media on Canvas
    Size (WxH): 31" x 24" inch
  • Dancing With Red Ribbons Painting
    Dancing With Red Ribbons
    Oil on Canvas
    Size (WxH): 445" x 335" inch

General Information on Canvas Oil Paintings

The most common type of painting is usually on canvas, as it's light and durable enough to be used for decoration purposes. Different types of oils can be used on the canvas to create different textures and blending effects, so artists all over the world paint with oil on canvas. Many of the world's most famous paintings are on canvas, so it's likely that you have seen a few canvas paintings in your life, there's probably one in your living room.

Some artists will bring a canvas with them to a location that they want to paint, and some artists will paint one work of art on multiple canvases, which is a technique seen occasionally in modern art. Oil paintings dry slower than acrylic, but this is also why many artists prefer oil paint, so they can work with one painting over a short period of time. Otherwise, acrylic paint dries so quick that the artist will have to finish the painting the same day.

From a viewer's perspective, canvas oil paintings are the best types of paintings to invest in, or purchase with the intent to hang it up on your wall. The quality and texture of a real canvas oil painting is quite amazing, and the printed copies just don't have that same quality. You will be able to notice the texture of the brush strokes, which can sometimes represent emotion in modern and abstract art.

What is Special About Oil Painting

Artists will use the different types of oil to manipulate their paintings and add shading effects, or even realistic textures. When viewing a canvas oil painting in person, one will notice the texture, and get a better understanding of how much work went into making the painting. Some paintings are glossy, while some are more creative, mixing the different types of oils to create textures for clouds, grass, wood, water and more. Oil paint is great because it is extremely versatile, which gives the artists way more freedom and ability to create a unique piece of art.


Artists have preferred to create canvas oil paintings for decades now, as other types of paint aren't nearly as versatile. The effects produced from the different types of oil paints can certainly help an artist create a unique piece of art. Acrylic paint is great, although it is very limited in comparison to the various types of oil mediums used to create paintings. An oil painting created on a canvas is the best, as it can easily be transported as a canvas is usually light enough to be hung on a wall.

Before, traditional artists were using wooden planks that weren't nearly as good as the canvas.

Posted on 12/23/2014 Art Blog 1654