Rublev Colors Canada Balsam Oil

2 In stock
Article code P-7738
Rublev Colours Balsam Essential Oil Medium is composed of Canada balsam, pale bodied linseed oil and spike oil. Add to colors for enamel-like effects, to achieve glow in glazes and facilitate fusion.

How to Use

Add a small amount of Balsam Essential Oil Medium to your paint to make it brush out more easily, and dry more quickly. Balsam Essential Oil Medium can be thinned with spike oil or turpentine. Mixed directly into the paint on the palette, it gives colors a flowing consistency yet dries to a satin to gloss finish, depending upon the amount used. Balsam Essential Oil Medium smells wonderful.

Rublev Colours Balsam Essential Oil Medium is an excellent substitute for Ralph Mayer’s glazing medium described in his handbook, The Artist's Handbook of Materials and Techniques, which is a medium composed of stand oil, dammar varnish, and turpentine.


Balsam Essential Oil Medium is a 44% weight to volume solution of Canada balsam in bodied linseed oil and spike oil (written in scientific notation as 44% w/v). Canada balsam is a turpentine made from the resin of the balsam fir tree (Abies balsamea) that grows in boreal North America. The resin, dissolved in essential oils, is a viscous, sticky, yellowish liquid that becomes a transparent yellowish mass when the essential oils evaporate. Canada balsam becomes amorphous solid upon drying. Since it does not crystallize with age, its optical properties do not deteriorate. Canada balsam is clearer and faster-drying than Venice turpentine.

Balsam Essential Oil Medium contains the palest bodied linseed oil to provide greater leveling and flow out and better drying properties.

Balsam Essential Oil Medium contains spike oil. Our spike oil is an essential oil obtained by distillation of the flower spikes of the herb Lavandula x. intermedia ‘Grosso’ or other related species. It was commonly used as a solvent in oil painting by European old masters. For instance, Francisco Pacheco mentions the use of spike oil in his book Arte de la pintura (1649) For more information on the spike oil in Balsam Essential Oil Medium please read the article, Lavender Spike Oil: Source, Use and History in Painting.

Note: Always test the use of any medium in your application before using in your artwork. It is never recommended to exceed 20% by volume of mediums to paint in any application.

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