How did the van Gogh paint?

“This morning I saw the countryside from my window a long time before sunrise, with nothing but the morning star, which looked very big,” Vincent van Gogh
Van Gogh was known for his thick application of paint on canvas, called impasto. An Italian word for “paste” or “mixture”, impasto is used to describe a painting technique where paint is laid on so thickly that the texture of brush strokes or palette knife are clearly visible.

Van Gogh used an impulsive, gestural application of paint and symbolic colors to express subjective emotions. These methods and practice came to define many subsequent modern movements from Fauvism to Abstract Expressionism.

Van Gogh used large hog hair brushes and no medium. His palette included many of the new 19th-century colors so favored by the Impressionists: Cobalt Blue, Ultramarine, Prussian Blue, Viridian Green, Chrome Yellow, Lemon Yellow, Vermilion and Ochre.

Materials Needed

  • Titanium white
  • Vermilion
  • Ultramarine
  • Chrome or Cadmium Yellow
  • Lemon Yellow
  • Phthalo Blue
  • Prussian Blue
  • Viridian Green
  • Yellow Ochre
  • Cobalt Blue
  • Mars Black
  • Hog Hair filberts sizes 4,6,7,8