Oil painting is an art form that dates back centuries and has played a key role in the decorations of castles, famous estates and the homes of commoners. Some of the most well-known and well-loved artists in the world used the medium of oil painting to capture timeless scenes from history, religion, politics and art. Many of the paintings done so long ago can still be viewed today in fine museums around the world. Others have been lost to time.
Oil painting has become something of a lost art, as the medium is readily available to anyone. However, the true skill of an artist well-versed in the oil painting technique is not as common. An originally oil panting can be done by virtually any person, regardless of skill, education or experience however the lost art of photo to oil painting means that there are a steadily decreasing amount of people who take the time to educated themselves on the intricacies of the medium.
Traditional Portrait Painting Before cameras, a person would commission a portrait from an artist as a birthday gift, a wedding anniversary gift or as a unique gift for another special occasion. Portrait painting traditionally requires that the subject sits very still for hours on end while the artist attempts to capture the scene as accurately as possible through an original oil painting. This process was often arduous and tiring, as it required a commitment of a long span of days from broth the artist and the person who had commissioned the portrait
The Technological Revolution The new digital age of art has heavily influenced virtually every art medium, including oil painting. Modern technology has almost obliterated the need for long sessions sitting still during a portrait painting. Now, families or other groups who wish to commission a portrait can simply hand the artist a photo and have an oil portrait once the artist is finished translating the photo to canvas.
The lost art of oil painting has fallen prey to the convenience and speed of the digital age as well as to busy schedules and short deadlines. However, oil painting artists are generally considered to be fine craftsmen and are reimbursed for their expertise with prestige and (usually) substantial commission fees.