Sunday, November 1, 2020

Can you take casein on an airplane?

Paul asks: "Have you ever taken the plane with casein? Is it possible to travel with it (either checked in or in carry-on)?"

Paul, there's no problem packing the tubes of casein in your checked luggage. If you want to take them as carry-on, it's also OK because the tubes are smaller than the 3.4 ounce maximum limit. The average Richeson tube is 1.25oz. But be careful because the big tubes of white are 5 oz. or 150ml. 

The good thing about casein for a remote painting adventure is that you don't need to worry about bringing mineral spirits or oil solvent, which you can't take on an airplane, checked or otherwise.

However I would not recommend casein for actually painting in airports, or other enclosed spaces. That's because it has a rather strong smell that not everyone loves. Another thing to keep in mind is that if you paint with it, you'll need to clean up fairly quickly after finishing the painting. If it dries on your brush, the dried paint can wreck the fibers. That's not such a problem with gouache because you can reactivate paint that has dried on your brush.


Trey said...

Mr. Gurney - have you ever used water-mixable oils? I apologize if I missed you discussing it on your blog, but I didn't find anything on it. I am thinking about trying them out since you do not need the solvents to clean up. If you have tried them what are your thoughts? I appreciate all that you do.

James Gurney said...

Trey, no, I've never tried water mixable oils. Let us know how you like them when you give them a try.

Virginia Fhinn said...

I've used water mixable oils a bit, after developing a sensitivity to paint thinner. They are kind of goopy and sticky in consistency, and they don't dry/cure as firmly as conventional oils. The makers of water mixable oil paints recommend using their special medium to thin the paint rather than thinning with water for under painting, so the water is supposed to be used for the clean-up only.... having said that, though, many artists use it thinned with water for under paintings without issue, so far. We don't really know how these paints hold up over time because the emulsifiers added to them are relatively new. If the longevity of a painting isn't a big deal then it's not a problem. As a side note, I'll say that I've discovered citrus thinner, (I use a brand made by Eco-House but there are other brands out there) and it completely changed my comfort level while painting, no more headaches. I wrote the company and the responded saying it was suitable for under painting, thinning paint, and also for clean-up. It's been a real game changer for me. Good luck!

Paul Michel said...

Hi James,

I just saw this in depth answer to my question, thanks a bunch! I didn't know about the smell of casein so that's good information.

The main reason I was asking is that I'm soon to leave to europe for an extended period of time and I was debating buying casein here in the US before leaving (since Richeson is the only "artist" grade supplier that I could fine). Since then, I've found that some art stores where I'm going do hold imported richeson casein at a fairly good price, so it looks like I'll wait and buy my paint there so I don't have to deal with it on the plane.

In any case, thanks for the answer. Love the blog and the youtube channel, you have been a huge inspiration for me to pick up painting as a hobby