An original oil painting can be very nice wall décor as well as a valued family heirloom. Usually, after you purchased your oil painting, you’ll display it in a very special place around the house or office so that you can enjoy it. Unfortunately, as everything else in this world; a painting also ages. With that being said; a painting will need caring and maintenance so that it can be enjoyed for many years to come.
1st Mistake: Constantly cleaning the painting. You don’t want to constantly be wiping the surface of a painting, as this can (in time) also wipe the paint off. If the painting must be dusted, use a gentle feather duster or a clean (dry) cotton cloth. You can also lightly brush the dust away using a clean, soft bristled soft bristle watercolor brush, or an inexpensive hog-hair brush. An alternative way of dusting a canvas is to remove it from the wall, turn it over, and gently shake the dust off (this is especially helpful if the painting has built excessive dust). If the painting gets a drinking beverage stain, such as coffee, soda, wine, etc.; you may clean it with a clean water-damped cotton cloth. Gently rub off the stain, without creating too much pressure on the surface of the painting. If the painting has a wood frame, try not to use a wet/damped cloth; as this might ruin the finish. However, if the canvas is stained with other type of paint/stain for whatever reason, its cleaning is a job best left to a professional conservator who has both the skills and the equipment needed to clean and repair your painting.
2nd Mistake: Displaying it unsafely. When looking to display your painting; make sure you place it out of harm’s way. Preferably, the paintings should not be displayed where it can run the risk of being leaned against, constantly touched with the fingers, and avoid areas with extreme temperature (like an air vent or a functioning fireplace) as these can create premature cracking of the painting; due to the expansion and contraction caused by extreme temperatures. Also, if possible display it away from direct sunlight, as this will cause an oil painting to fade. A rule of thumb for this is to hang you oil paintings in rooms with low levels of direct or artificial lighting.
3rd Mistake: Improper Storage. If for any reason you decide to store/ship the painting; make sure that you use the correct materials. If you’re shipping or storing the painting for a short period of time; wrap it in craft/butcher paper and cushion it by using cardboard slats or bubble wrap on each side. If the painting is framed; make sure to create cushion for the corners (as this are the areas were the painting usually receives most of the damage) and place it in a cardboard box for storing mirrors/art. If the painting is being stored for a long period of time; follow the instructions above with the exception of butcher/craft paper, in this case use acid-free paper, as this will help prevent the painting from acid deterioration. Also, if possible store the oil painting in a room with dry temperature
My name is Jose Trujillo and I’m a professional fine art landscape painter with over 16 years of experience. My artwork sits in private and corporate collections around the world. I hope you enjoyed reading this article.