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Topic: Oil Paintings
Oil painting is the process of painting with pigments that are bound with a medium of drying oil. Commonly used drying oils include linseed oil, poppy seed oil, walnut oil, and safflower oil. Different oils confer various properties to the oil paint, such as less yellowing or different drying times. Certain differences are also visible in the sheen of the paints depending on the oil. An artist might use several different oils in the same painting depending on specific pigments and effects desired. The paints themselves also develop a particular consistency depending on the medium. The oil may be boiled with a resin, such as pine resin or frankincense to create a varnish; often prized for its body and gloss.
Although oil paint was first used for the Buddhist paintings by Indian and Chinese painters in western Afghanistan sometime between the fifth and tenth centuries, it did not gain popularity until the 15th century. Its practice may have migrated westward during the Middle Ages. Oil paint eventually became the principal medium used for creating artworks as its advantages became widely known. The transition began with Early Netherlandish painting in Northern Europe and by the height of the Renaissance oil painting techniques had almost completely replaced tempera paints in the majority of Europe.
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