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Thread: Ox Gall Liquid?

  1. #1

    Default Ox Gall Liquid?

    I just picked up a informational flier from W&N on their line of watercolor mediums. It states that the blending medium slows the drying time and aids in blending. It was discussed in my paint pallette thread that this does indeed work with acrylics. I noticed Ox Gall Liquid improves flow and increases wetting. My question is does this medium work with acrylics and if so would a combination of Ox Gall and blending medium cause good or bad results?

  2. #2


    Ox gall is a wetting agent as you\'ve said, used to increase the penetration of watercolour washes into paper, for example when heavy sizing makes them have a tendency to form beads on its surface.

    It does the same sort of thing as other wetting agents but it works in a different way to do this, you\'ll probably want to steer clear of it for acrylics because they don\'t generally take well to changes in pH.


  3. #3

    Default it bile from an Ox\'s gall bladder? If its not, where on earth did they get the name from!


  4. #4
    Coffin Dodger / Keymaster airhead's Avatar
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    Shaz, evidently it is from a bovine gall bladder:

    The bile obtained from the gall bladder of a bovine animal, usually a domesticated cow. It consists of a ropy. mucous, semi-transparent liquid, and contains sodium salts of taurocholic and glycocholic acids, cholesterol, lecithin, etc. Ox-gall is used as the expanding and binding medium for the colors used in MARBLING .
    It is necessary in all marbling, and it is important that it be pure and free from water. When in its original state it is yellowish or greenish brown, but becomes clear and dark brown when allowed to settle. The liquid is then drawn off and mixed with alcohol. Its effect on the colors is to make them spread out in large flat rings when they are dropped on the size Ox-gall is also used in engraving and lithography

  5. #5


    leave well alone i just tryed it and it makes certain paints go very chalky:(

  6. #6


    This may be a very good time to decide to give up brush licking people...:|~


  7. #7


    Originally posted by Fizl
    This may be a very good time to decide to give up brush licking people...:|~
    Yeah, and we thought Future tasted bad!


  8. #8


    If you don\'t mind Einion. Do you know if the granulation, texture or iridescent mediums for watercolors from W&N have any adverse reactions to acrylics like the Ox Gall does?

  9. #9


    Not at all. I\'m not quite sure how the granulation medium actually works, but it should help acrylics to granulate if they\'re applied as a wash, probably works best on a 2D surface though and the effect might not be the same as with watercolours because it could interact with the polymer binder in a different way to how it does with gum Arabic. I don\'t know about the texture medium other than it contains small particles. The iridescent medium will add just what you\'d expect, iridescence! :D

    One thing to bear in mind: all of these are intended for watercolour use so they\'ll use a water-soluble binder, this will tend to make the acrylics a little soluble, the more you add the more pronounced the effect will be; there are acrylic equivalents to the texture medium (many types) and the iridescent medium which are fairly widely available if you want these effects but don\'t want the solubility worry.


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