#tbt Let’s go back….to Milo and my first attempt at oils

Here we have my first throwback post to my non-abstract work!

Introducing Milo the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, and my first try using oil paints  🙂

I’d always used watercolours or acrylics up to this point but felt the urge to branch out and give these a go. Working full time means I rarely get chance to spend hours and hours in front of a painting uninterrupted, and often ends with paint going to waste after being abandoned for a few hours or days means it’s dried out on my palette.


I figured it was time to take the plunge, try oils, and allow myself longer time between sittings without losing the colours I was working with.


I opted for water mixable Winsor & Newton oils, as I don’t like handling white spirits plus I don’t have a huge amount of space for ventilation.

(I love how he’s starting to appear!)


I was surprised how easily I took to them, to be honest. I think I’d built them up to be this difficult medium to master but in reality they’re great to use. The colours are so rich and glossy; really satisfying to apply.


Saying that though, I found the white to fade as it dried, so I was conscious of needing to use this piece as a bit of a trial run to see how the different colours stood the test of time before completing any commissions with them.

(Look at those ears! Beautiful little dog 🙂 )


By this point, I’d spent about 4 hours applying the paint (i’d had the canvas primed and drawn out already) and I was amazed I had pretty much a finished piece. They are so much faster to use than acrylics!


I started adding a little more detail around his left eye, changed the background colour as the pink clashed with his colouring, then I believe that is where I left it.

This is how he’s looked since November 2013: