Revisiting the Mische Technique

W-Greg tempra test

In August of 2003, Roxana and I embarked on a journey to a small village in the Austrian Alps called Reichenau for a Visionary Artist workshop. Our mission was to learn a secret and ancient painting technique called Mische that had been resurrected by the contemporary visionary painter Ernst Fuchs.

The process is laborious involving extensive preparation of the board, a detailed egg tempera painting with meticulous layers of oil glazes. The origins of the mixed (mische) media method is attributed to the Flemish brothers Jan and Hubert van Eyck.

1. We prepared our ground by mixing powdered paint with ground is made with linseed oil and damar varnish. 

W-Grounding pigmentW-Grinding pigment 2W-Imprimatura

2. We prepared the egg medium by adding equal amounts of painting medium (half linseed oil, half damar varnish) to a cracked egg then adding water.

Egg tempera preparation:

Pour a heaping teaspoonful of titanium white powder on a glass surface, then and add enough egg medium until the mixture is a consistency similar to yogurt. Next, grind the mixture until very smooth and even.

With a palette knife scrape the newly prepared egg tempera onto a small piece of damp sponge placed at the bottom of an airtight jar.

W-Greg test panel:ink

1. Gesso the wood, canvas, or pressed wood masonite, in our case it was wood panel.

2. Permanent ink under drawing

W-Greg test panel 5

3. Apply the ‘ground’ also referred to as the imprimatura, this is an warm earth tone, usually a bright, brick red.

W-Greg painting 2a

W-Greg test 1

4. Begin painting to hi-lite with the prepared egg tempera.


5. When the egg tempera is bone dry we begin with the first glaze in yellow, allow to dry for a few days or longer.


6. A second hi-light phase with tempera is now applied. 

W-Greg painting.jpg

W-Angels 3.jpg

W-Greg Angels w: glaze

W-Angels 7a.jpg

7. When this layer is bone dry, apply the second blue glaze (Cerulean, ultramarine or cobalt depending on the affect you are after). The process continues…

Based on notes and Brigid Marlins website.


About Spalenka

I am committed to empowering truth and the art spirit within all.
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