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Safely Handling Art Materials

Safely Handling Art Materials

Using the tools and techniques of the Old Masters is a rewarding experience. You must remember, however, that you are dealing with materials that may be harmful if not handled with care. It must not be assumed that the absence of a health warning indicates that a material is safe. Some materials can be harmful if ingested and persistent exposure to them will at least cause irritation and possibly harm to you. There is an increasing amount of information available as to the dangers of various art materials but the safest way is to treat all materials as potentially harmful.

Do not let these warnings, however, deter you from exploring your craft and improving your work. Since the minimum care needed for most materials is no more than good sound studio practice. Here are our recommendations:

Always read the label. When transferring art materials to other containers, transfer the label from the original packaging onto the new container.

  • Keep products out of reach of children.
  • Never use our products for skin painting, food preparation or other uses they were not intended for.
  • Do not eat, drink or smoke while using art materials.
  • Store mediums and pigments in sealed, easy to open containers.
  • Wash up after each use—clean yourself and your tools. Keep your work area clean.
  • Do not ingest paint, oil painting mediums or pigments. Keep your work area well ventilated. Wear gloves to reduce risk of skin irritation, especially if you have cuts or abrasions.
  • Wear dedicated work clothing such as an apron.
  • Protect hands and skin from exposure. Do not allow your hands to get caked in materials—wash them frequently. Keep hands away from face and eyes.

Safe Use Labels

Some of our products contain hazardous materials such as turpentine and litharge. All of these products are clearly marked with warning labels on the packaging. When precautions are taken, such as wearing gloves, the risk of exposure to these potentially hazardous materials is greatly minimized.

Products carrying warning labels and cautions for safe use can be used safely by individuals who are able to read, understand and follow suggested precautions for handling those materials. Sometimes products cannot be made non-hazardous, because they are necessary for certain creative activities. When used in properly supervised and controlled conditions, they can be employed with the risk of exposure to potentially hazardous materials greatly minimized.

We make the following information available to you to help you evaluate the toxicity of mediums and other artist's materials offered by Old Masters Maroger.

If you have any further questions please do not hesitate to contact us. Thank you and Happy Painting!


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