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Owning an Oil Painting and Maintaining It
Being the owner of a genuine work of art is always something the owner can take pride in. And with the ever increasing popularity of cyber art galleries and e shopping, purchasing an original oil painting isn’t a common gripe among art lovers anymore. However, just like choosing the painting you want to own is a task involving time, its maintenance also demands the owner’s time and patience. For without proper maintenance and care, the painting can and will lose its beauty and become less valuable for the owner and the viewer alike.
Though there are services out there which you can employ to maintain your paintings for you, we’re here to let you know a few dos and don’ts of maintaining paintings; some very effective ‘do it yourself’ (DIY) tips which will enable you to easily take on the task yourself.
Seven Tips To Caring For Your Oil Paintings
Here are seven diy tips you can apply to care for your oil paintings
1. Don’t Expose to an Immoderate Amount of Light
Intense levels of light can potentially fade and/or darken a painting. In order to avoid this, make sure the paintings aren’t exposed to direct sunlight. Brighter the light, the greater the risk of exposure to heat, so try to use moderate light levels. Don’t ever place the bulbs near the surface of the painting. Don’t mount lights upon the frame of the painting. And lastly, instead of using direct light in close proximity to the painting, use scattered light from a safe distance of ten feet to fully avoid any damage from heat.
2. Don’t Expose to Dark
Avoid storing oil paintings in the dark. If a painting is kept in a dark place for a long duration of time, it will start to become increasingly darker.
3. Don’t Expose to High Temperatures & Humidity
Huge variations in temperature and humidity can cause the wooden frame and the canvas to expand or contract depending upon the change. Needless to say, this can cause damage to the painting. Both the canvas and the frame absorb moisture and absorbing moisture can cause them to expand when humidity is high and shrink when its low. As a result of this, the oil paint can break and might even peel off as it wont expand with the changes.
4. Maintain a set temperature range and humidity level
Maintain this temperature range and humidity level in order to display your oil paintings as they are:
Temperature 65-70 degrees Fahrenheit
Temperature 70-75 degrees Fahrenheit
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5. Handle With Care
An old oil painting is nothing short of a relic. It’s best that you take extra care about its handling. Make sure you hold the painting on both ends while moving or transporting it. Don’t hold it only from the top of the frame, and definitely, never ever by the hanging wire! Remember, even the lightest of bumps on the canvas of the painting can cause a break in the surface of the paint, so avoid that at all cost.
6. Don’t Let Them get Dirty
Once accumulated there, dirt will attract pollutants, moisture and mould upon the painting’s surface. And of course these elements can damage the artwork so, its best you keep the painting in a smoke free environment and away from windows if you open them regularly. Try to avoid hanging them near candles and fireplaces as well.
7. Clean Your Paintings Regularly & Carefully
A great way to clean paintings is to lightly wipe the surface of the paint with a clean and dry soft cloth or an anti-static cloth (which is used to clean photographic negatives). The advantage is that these cloths behave like magnets and thus lift the dust from off the surface of the paintings while avoiding scratching and scraping. Balls of cotton, first made slightly wet by adding distilled water, can be pressed slightly on the surface to remove the dirt which you are unable to remove by wiping.