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Why Your Paint and Medium Sometimes Doesn’t Stick: The Beading on Your Canvas and How to Fix It

Yes, I promise, I’m really going to give you the solution.

So, for all of this fuss about paint or medium acting like “beads on a duck’s back,” it turns out the duck knew why all along.  So did Max Doerner.  Which is a good thing, because if it had been left to my powers of deduction it would have remained a mystery unsolved.

Why does water run off a Duck’s back?  Rumor has it (i.e., Yahoo! Answers) that ducks have something called a “preen gland” that produces a waterproof mixture of waxes and oils.

So guess why your paint or medium (when you “oil in”)–or even varnish–sometimes forms beads on an already-painted surface?  Yep, oil.

The solution?  I’ll pass this on to Max…

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