Anne D'Alton's Blog - Art and your health.

Posted by: AnneDalton

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     Art and your health are quite closely interlinked.    No, I am not talking about the artist who spends endless hours hunched over badly lit drawings, nor the person who spends all day at his/her easel, but, I am talking about the person who although familiar with the warnings, continues to be careless when it comes to the use of painting materials, particularly oils, that contain the "C" and "T" words.
Cadmium and titanium come with health warnings as do the corrosive solvents that are used to clean paint brushes.

Yes, I know that when you are caught up in your work, it is all too easy to wipe your hands on the nearest rag, or on overalls or to clean your hands with your brush cleaner.   With the watercolourist, the quickest way to get a good point on a brush is to put it in your mouth!
Unfortunately, all these actions can and do result in horrible body, facial and hand rashes
that can be really difficult to heal.  
The reason I am bringing these points to your attention is that recently I encountered a couple of artists with severe rashes, one person indeed (and he makes his living by painting in oils) has been told by a skin specialist to give up oil painting for at least six months..........

So remember, as an artist you must be careful how you handle your art materials and be good to yourself in this regard.     Happy and successful painting.


Comments (4)Add Comment
written by Blu, June 10, 2010
Interesting to read this, I find some cheap acrylic paints have quite a strong smell, and I wondered if that is a bad thing. Funny though I was expecting to read how art is therapy for your mental health, a good way to unwind after a stressful day. Best wishes Blu.
written by quirkydame, July 01, 2010
Like Blu, I was expecting to read something different. Instead you offered up a warning that I really did need to hear. I use oils - cadmium and titanium, not hues - and unfortunately, I have a lot of skin problems. Because of that, I often have cracks on my hands. Last week during a class, I began to notice that paint was all over my hands. I'm a messy painter! I hate the thought of wearing gloves, but hearing the warning that one painter got has made me realize that I need to get over it and wear them. Thank you!
written by Lizzie, July 13, 2010
I agree,
artists hands are a tool that need careful looking after yet unfortunately so often get forgotten.
@indicamama the other creative side of me on Twitter may be able to help with advice or treatments for the usual suspects, such as eczema and dermatitis.

In fact, I suffered so badly with the toxins and solvents in paints that I had to explore other creative avenues for a long time, before returning to painting again. This time with new knowledge and plenty of acrylics in hand.
written by 111CollageDesign, August 08, 2010
Good reminders! I have a chronic illness which has resulted in many chemical sensitivities. I have no choice but to take many precautions regarding toxin exposure while making art, but since I have I enjoy the process of creating so much more. It 's made a huge difference smilies/smiley.gif

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