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 50+ Year Old Oil Painting (Restore?)

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Rsue



Posts : 30
Join date : 2016-08-05

PostSubject: 50+ Year Old Oil Painting (Restore?)   Mon Aug 22, 2016 1:27 pm

Back in 1963, when I was 14 years old, I painted two small (8"x16") pictures using traditional oil paints. I created the picture designs from just some images I had inside my head (they are reflective of the type of things many people used to have on their walls back in those days). These little oil paintings have lived inside my black art portfolio for years - still in good shape generally. I've never framed them but I would like to do something to preserve them better, possibly to display them, going forward. The colors are still very good. I don't remember if I used any type of fixative or varnish on them. I am wondering if there is something I could gently dab over the oils to freshen them - maybe even brighten them up a bit, since the oils are from the 1960s. Bear in mind that my "canvasses" are a 1/8" thick panel of cardboard from a box! (I would like to post a picture of my little works but don't see a place to do that here.)
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JanG



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Join date : 2012-07-20
Location Location : NC - USA

PostSubject: Re: 50+ Year Old Oil Painting (Restore?)   Mon Aug 22, 2016 3:26 pm

Well, this is a really weird forum in that you can't post an image in an opening post but have to post a reply then add your image!

There's also quite a process to post and it's different from most forums also!

So to add your images:

Click on 'postreply' in this thread. Click on the Host Image icon (see screenshot)



You'll have to scroll down to see that your image is there.








I hope that helps! I tend to forget how to do it since it's so different!

Can't wait to see your paintings!



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Rsue



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PostSubject: Oh my - I clicked on Post Reply but see no such icons!   Mon Aug 22, 2016 4:53 pm

All I see is the A icon above!
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Rsue



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PostSubject: Re: 50+ Year Old Oil Painting (Restore?)   Mon Aug 22, 2016 4:58 pm


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Rsue



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PostSubject: Re: 50+ Year Old Oil Painting (Restore?)   Mon Aug 22, 2016 5:02 pm

OK - sorry - I located everything but when I tried to insert the download it gave me some choices that I did not know how to make! I'll keep trying but in the even I continue to fail, I want to say thanks for all your trouble! And, if you can tell me what I can dab onto these traditional oil paintings to refresh them (if anything) please let me know. Thank you, Jan!
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Rsue



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PostSubject: Re: 50+ Year Old Oil Painting (Restore?)   Mon Aug 22, 2016 5:19 pm



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judyfilarecki
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PostSubject: Re: 50+ Year Old Oil Painting (Restore?)   Tue Aug 23, 2016 10:48 am

Welcome Rsue. I'm glad that you persisted. For some reason posting pictures  has always been a challenge, but do-able. Thanks Jan for being so helpful. I've been kind of tied up lately. I know there are posts here in the forum regarding finishes to  put on oils. I'll do a search for you. If you want, there is a search option in the top menu that you could try yourself. I'll get back to you.

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judyfilarecki
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PostSubject: Re: 50+ Year Old Oil Painting (Restore?)   Tue Aug 23, 2016 11:00 am

Rsue, here is one post you might find helpful that Jan wrote several years ago.

http://watersolubleoils.forumotion.com/t1078-temporary-varnish-for-display-purposes?highlight=varnish

To find more posts, I just typed in varnish into the "Search" link in the top menu and found four different  ones that you might want to look at.

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Rsue



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PostSubject: Re: 50+ Year Old Oil Painting (Restore?)   Tue Aug 23, 2016 11:03 am

Thanks again, Judy. But if they are already varnished I don't necessarily want to put more varnish on, do I? I just want to freshen up what is already there.
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Rsue



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PostSubject: Re: 50+ Year Old Oil Painting (Restore?)   Tue Aug 23, 2016 11:11 am

I read the posts that you listed. My little paintings are not painted with WSOs; I painted them with regular old fashioned traditional oils from 1963. It seems as if I could do the "oiling out" method or a "varnish retouch". There don't seem to be any "sunken in" areas - there seems to be a nice, even soft sheen to the paintings. But remember I painted them on 1/8" thick cardboard (when I was 14)! And they've been living inside the darkness of my big black art portfolio for over 50 years - I'm wondering what will happen if I frame them and put them on a wall and expose them to daylight.
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judyfilarecki
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PostSubject: Re: 50+ Year Old Oil Painting (Restore?)   Tue Aug 23, 2016 1:32 pm

I really don't have an answer. Try leaving one out but not in an area that gets direct sunlight and see what happens. I did traditional oils years ago and never varnished them and they still don't show any changes. The fact that they were painted on cardboard, which is not acid-free, might be more of problem, but that would probably show up generations from now.

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JanG



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PostSubject: Re: 50+ Year Old Oil Painting (Restore?)   Tue Aug 23, 2016 1:51 pm

Nice paintings and I'm so glad you were able to figure out how to post them. Posting is definitely a challenge here so hope you took notes on what you did! I'm sorry my instructions weren't clearer.

As for refreshing your paintings, if they've already been varnished, I doubt if there's anything you can do. What do you want the paintings to look like? Don't they look like they did when you painted them? You said you used ordinary cardboard to paint on - did you gesso it before painting? That's probably not something a 14 year old would think to do so if not, the acids from the cardboard are probably already interacting with the oil paint. Since you've had them in darkness for 50 years, deterioration has probably been kept to a minimum but exposure to sunlight will hasten the acid migration. You might not want to put them on a wall for that reason. However, as Judy said, any really noticeable damage wouldn't show up for quite some time.

Sorry I couldn't help more.
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Rsue



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PostSubject: Re: 50+ Year Old Oil Painting (Restore?)   Tue Aug 23, 2016 2:28 pm

Thanks Jan, you've been very helpful! And no, when I was 14 I was a "kid painter" and knew nothing but the very basics. No gesso on there. So, if my little works are fated to deteriorate with exposure to light then I will put them into a display book where my other stuff is going to be placed and that'll be OK. Something my grandkids can look at. I know they are ordinary, not very interesting themes, but in person it's the way I worked my thick oils that is nice. The themes (matching bookend style, boy-girl, dog-cat, etc.) were just something that I imitated - stuff I recall that people put on their walls back then, "kitch" if you will. Take care!
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Rsue



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PostSubject: Re: 50+ Year Old Oil Painting (Restore?)   Mon Aug 29, 2016 1:12 pm

Anyone, I've been thinking ... With regard to my little old oil paintings on the cardboard ... realizing that it might take years and years (or even decades?) for the colors to deteriorate, what if I were to frame them in something like a shadowbox that has a UV protective glass over it? Granted, this would not be typically used for oil paintings where you would never cover them with glass, but given this special situation I'm wondering if the glass covered shadowbox would work as regards fending off any deterioration from light?
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JanG



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PostSubject: Re: 50+ Year Old Oil Painting (Restore?)   Tue Aug 30, 2016 4:08 pm

That might work but I would be a little loathe to try it as oils need to breathe even after they're dry. Maybe you could ask a framer or someone into conservation.
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Rsue



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PostSubject: Re: 50+ Year Old Oil Painting (Restore?)   Tue Aug 30, 2016 6:41 pm

Thank for responding, Jan. I actually talked to someone (who is an artist) at Hobby Lobby and I am taking them in for him to look at. They can be framed in a regular frame with an UV glass that is raised away from their surface. As these were painted in 1963 and for more than 50 years, have been laying flat and closed up inside my black portfolio back to back with lots of other things I drew, I would think that they were unable to breathe in that state. This is a project in progress!
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JanG



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PostSubject: Re: 50+ Year Old Oil Painting (Restore?)   Wed Aug 31, 2016 6:25 am

I'm no expert and it probably wouldn't hurt to try it. Let us know what you do and how it works.
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