6 Oil Painting Techniques to Look Out For

Oil paints are often considered a daunting medium for those who have no expertise in the area. Beginners tend to shy away from it and resort to other media like acrylics and watercolors. However, oil painting isn’t as difficult as it may appear. With a few simple techniques, you can master the art and create the perfect pieces in no time!

Picture of palette knives, paintbrush, and oil paints by a lit candle.


Here are six major oil painting techniques that are commonly used to create the perfect art pieces.


This technique is used to create contrasts between the dark and the light aspects in the painting. It was particularly famous amongst artists that existed during the Renaissance as their paintings focused on scene depiction. In this technique, the artists tend to create a source of light in the painting and use it as illumination for the rest of the elements in the scene.

Alla Prima

Many people don’t particularly like oil painting as a medium because it takes a long time to dry each layer of paint. For this reason, wet-on-wet oil painting techniques are popular for those who have less patience for the more conventional oil paint techniques.


Alla Prima is the most famous wet-on-wet technique that’s particularly famous for being a quick way to create paintings. Famed artists have used it like Monet and Van Gogh as it allowed them to paint in a single sitting as soon as inspiration struck them.


Underpainting is a lot like sketching on the canvas before painting. The artist uses a single thin layer of paint to sketch the art and then later fill it in with colored paints. This allows the artist to plan the painting and work their way through it.


Scumbling is the perfect technique for creating a textured or embossed look in paintings. These paintings are made using a dry and stiff brush that adds lines and texture to the overall painting. The hard brush also exposes the underpainting and creates a rough look.

Textured oil painting



This is a somewhat advanced oil painting technique that uses thick layers of paint on canvas. Each stroke is visible and has a textured appearance. The thick paints are often mixed directly on the canvas to create the final look.


Grisaille is a monochromatic painting technique that uses black, white, and grey to create the final look. These paintings use multiple shades of these colors to add depth to the different elements in the painting. It’s also a technique that is particularly famous amongst beginners.

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It takes us 8-12 weeks to create and deliver the art pieces to you. Our artists ensure that you’re completely satisfied before we deliver it to you. Whether you’re a local or an international customer, we aim to serve you with timeless art that you’ll be proud to own.


Visit our website to check out our sample artwork and place your order now. For details and further assistance, call us at 1-415-608-5796.