Once you’ve put oil paint onto a canvas it’s only a matter of time before you start wondering what else you can put it on. Can you use oil paint on glass, for instance? Yes, as it turns out, you certainly can. Best of all, you don’t need to do any special priming other preparation beyond making sure that the glass is clean and dry. Retail stores do it all of the time and you can do it, too!
In today’s article I’ll tall you a little more about painting and making sure that it sticks well and thoroughly. It doesn’t take a lot of effort but it can really look amazing. Let’s discuss the fun subject of oiling up your glass!
Will oil paints stick to glass?
Yes. Oil paints will stick to your glass with no problem. You’ll want to clean the surface first, of course, in order to make sure that there isn’t any dust or dirt that you might end up painting over, but as long as you do this first then the paint should go on without any issues.
That said, if you want something longer-lasting and that will look vibrant for a longer time, acrylic paints are really going to be a better fit. That’s because they form into a plastic that’s going to be much more resistant to chipping and abrading (especially if you are painting outside glass!).
Acrylic paint is going to stick better too and you’ll probably be able to do better detail work. Finally, you can bake in acrylics onto glass for a bit more permanency, but beyond these advantages if you just feel like slapping some oils onto some glass in your home, then go for it.
Just don’t forget to clean it and let it dry first!
Can I use oil paint on a mirror?
Yes, you can use your oil paints on a mirror. As with standard glass, you want to make sure that you give it a thorough cleaning first and then you’ll want to let it dry. After you’ve done this, you can easily paint the surface to add whatever you like – perhaps a little framing scene with castles and a magical forest or if you’ve got a good sense of humor, you can paint in a mustache and give your sleepy roommate a start the next morning.
As long as it’s clean, the paint should stick.
You can also get oil-based paint markers if you just want to doodle a little. If you decide to go this route, then just make sure that you pick the kind that doesn’t require being cured in an oven. It will go on just like a regular marker would on construction paper, but you won’t get that diluted/diffused look that a normal marker would produce on the glass.
Before you scoff at the idea of markers, just remember that you can get them with varying tips, which means you can do some black and white sketching that is nothing short of mind-blowing if you’re pretty good at drawing. Just something to think about when you are decorating your home mirror!
How do you apply oil paint to glass?
Applying oil paint to glass can be done one of two ways. First off, you can use the method I mentioned previously of just cleaning it properly and letting it dry before you paint. This works nicely and if you want to clean it later, you can easily sop up a little linseed oil or another favorite solvent and go to town on it, clearing the glass for your next oily work.
Now, if you want something a little more permanent, you can also get some fine grit sandpaper and lightly sand the glass surface. The goal is to make it a little more friendly for the oil paint to stick for a longer time, while still retaining the clarity of the glass. This is something that takes a little practice, so I recommend that you get some small glass panes at your local hardware store to try out first before you paint that fancy piece of glass that you’ve got in mind.
All it takes is a light touch, so don’t overdo it, but with very little practice you’ll be able to see the difference in the painted glass when it’s finished.
Some closing comments
So, can you use oil paint on glass? You betcha! Painting glass with your oil paints just requires a clean surface and a steady hand, and if you want the paint to stick around longer then a light sanding to prepare the surface will help the oil paints to get a better, more permanent purchase on your glass. That said, consider acrylics if you want to bake them in and make it REALLY permanent. Just a little food for thought.
Just in case the idea of baking acrylic on glass is appealing to you, I’m including a nice 3rd party link that can tell you exactly how it’s done. Just click here and give it a peek if you like. It looks amazing and it’s really not hard to do at all.