Jack Tenney is an artist that contacted us about his work with landscapes – particularly his interest in using walnut oil and Oil of Spike Lavender.  In his experimentation he discovered that using Balsam Spike Varnish as part of the paint medium allows him to paint without needing a final coat of varnish. Here is his outline of the process….

This is a description of how I painted this work.  I like to do landscapes and I continue to develop my skills. In this painting I apply what I have learned. First, as with all landscape paintings I started with the background, the farthest point distant in the painting, which is the sky. I used Cerulean Blue as the background color. I have for some time been using only a mix of linseed oil and walnut oil as a medium, with no turps or OMS. Also I Have begun using products by The Art Treehouse. This painting is a test project for the new “Balsam Spike Varnish” medium. I used this medium by mixing it with the paint, as well as with Oil of Spike Lavender. The goal was to produce a painting with the superior product “Balsam Spike Varnish” incorporated in the paint. Next after the sky – the clouds. The colors for the clouds are ivory black, white, perm. violet med., ultra blue deep, and lemon. I varied the amount of the violet, and blue and black depending on the depth of color I wanted. Also I used white to lighten the colors as well. For the bottom line of trees I used ultra blue deep, black and olive green with some lemon. I used a mix of ultra blue deep, white, and lemon yellow for the sun’s rays and back light areas. I had to let the painting set up for several days to achieve the rays by loading the brush with the lemon yellow mix and lightly dragging the brush on the canvas to achieve the ray effect. As stated above I used a medium mix using the Balsam Spike product throughout the painting.

Once the painting dried it had a sheen,  like it had been lightly varnished, but the medium had actually been mixed into the paint rather than being applied as a surface coating.