Review of Lukas 1862 paints

The last few months I've been using Lukas 1862 oil paints in different venues. I've used them in plein air painting, demos, large and small studio paintings. I've made some comparisons to the brands I usually use as far as mix ability and tinting strength. Lukas 1862 paints have been produced in Germany since, you guess it 1862. They also make a student grade called Lukas Studio, I haven’t tried them.

The 1862 colors are mixed with linseed oil, non yellowing sunflower oil and bees wax which is supposed to give the paint a more buttery consistency as well as a quicker drying time. All this is easily found on the internet. I'm not a chemist so I have no opinion about the make up, although they claim to be very lightfast and permanent.

Lukas paints are found at Jerry's Artarama and can be bought on line at or at their stores around the country.

In the last 3 months I've found Lukas paintis to be very similar to utrecht paints as far as consistency in mixing and tinting strength. They are also comparable to Utrecht in price. When compared to Winsor Newton and Old Holland paints ( I had to take out a loan to get these) the tinting strength is not as strong but the price of Lukas paints are a fraction of the cost.

I know as artists were not supposed to think about the cost of paints and materials, only use whats considered the “best”, but life doesn’t always allow us that luxury, especially when putting kids through school and other things I consider more important than painting. ( yes, there are things more important then painting).

Lukas paints also have a drying element to them. For the few months that I've used them they have dried on the canvas over night, I live in the desert, Tucson AZ, so they probably dry faster here. The drying time can be both good and bad, there are times when I like the paint to remain wet so I can work back into it and mess with edges and blending. Drying overnight though can be an advantage when I want to work back into a dry painting to achieve cleaner color variation.

The quick drying aspect is handy when I'm traveling and I need my paintings to dry fast on the road. I recently taught 3 workshops in NY, Kansas City and the Chicago area and the fast drying aspect of the paints really helped with the demos and studies. The faster they dried the less hassle they were to deal with while traveling.

As far as the buttery consistency in mixing Lukas paints I didn't notice too much difference from what I usually use and I'm not sure I want my paints to mix like butter anyway. Sounds too mushy.

Below are some outdoor and studio paintings I did using Lukas paints.

For the most part I used Titanium white, cadmium yellow, alizarin crimson and ultramarine blue. Then as modifiers I used permanent orange, cyan blue and cobalt violet hue. Overall I found the tinting strength to be good, as well as the consistency when mixing and painting. The drying time can be helpful when traveling and painting outside and the price is very good.

Central Park Bridge 9x12

Washington Square Musicians 8x10

Lake Zurich 11x14

Lake Zurich 11x14

Horse Ranch Near Tubac 18x24


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