Painting with Charvin Paints

Like good canvas and brushes, good paints are really important to oil painting. Paints are even more important for direct painting techniques like plein air and alla prima. You need paints with right consistency and quality. Direct painting is hard enough! I face challenges of direct painting when I paint live at Weddings and Events. That is why I like Charvin paints. I was introduced to Charvin paints few years ago by Jerry’s Artarama. I have the benefit of living close to Jerry’s Artarama’s Raleigh store. While I enjoy shopping online, visiting store allows me to look at the actual products up close. The staff is great and is always willing to help and answer questions.

The paints are beautifully packaged:


I never had trouble opening tubes of old paint. Each tube is marked with pigment and permanence information. This information is also available on Charvin website.

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What make Charvin paints different from other paints is the binder: Charvin uses Poppy oil and not the Linseed oil. Poppy oil dries slower than Linseed oil. This is great for direct painting as it allows paint manipulation for a longer time. The paints will not yellow and maintain the original hue when dry. Poppy oil also imparts a creamier texture to Charvin paints. That is important for the brushing quality. I use paints out of the tube, but, occasionally add Clarified Poppy Oil to thin the paints.

Here are some examples of paintings done with Charvin paints:

Portrait (painted over multiple sessions):


Still Life (painted over multiple sessions):


Plein Air (painted over single session):


Landscape (painted over single session):


– Tesh Parekh

Fine Artist & Live Wedding Painter

Honorable mentions for my 2 gouache paintings! – Raleigh Fine Artist

Two of my recent paintings have won honorable mentions in Jerry’s Artarama‘s Turner Gouache Contest. Originals and prints are available!    Both are gouache paintings but painted differently. “Quilts” was painted in many session using many washes and layers. I painted “NC State Fair 2011” in single session. I am thankful to Jerry’s for their continued support to art and artists. May be in 2012 I will move up from honorable mentions…

NC State Fair 2011. 12x16 Watercolor on paper. Artist - Tesh Parekh. I have always wanted to paint NC State Fair. There is just so much energy at the fair! And the different shapes, colors, smell, the crowd and the movement. If I can find a good spot, I would like to paint en plein air one year. This is a gouache painting on paper. This painting has won honorable mention in Jerry's Artarama's Turner Gouache Contest. Unlike the painting of Burleigh Plantation, this is a freer painting. I painted this quickly.
Quilts. 20x16 Gouache on Aquabord. Artist - Tesh Parekh. This is Burleigh Plantation in Semora NC. I visited the plantation few weeks ago and found it very exciting. I have also done a drybrush painting of a slave cabin door of the plantation. I worked on this painting for many days. This painting has won honorable mention Jerry's Artarama's Turner Gouache contest. Painting in Gouache is quite different from watercolor. This is my first painting on Aquabord. I am not quite sure if I like the surface for my kind of paintings. I may have to try it with watercolors.

– Tesh Parekh

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“Pursuit of Light” wins honorable mention in Jerry’s Artarama’s Lukas painting contest

Pursuit of Light. 24×18. Oil on linen. Available.

Pursuit of Light. 24x18. Oil on Linen. Artist - Tesh Parekh

While I am preparing to paint live this weekend (wedding reception at the Angus Barn Pavilions), I just received this news! My painting “Pursuit of Light” has won honorable mention in the Jerry’s Artarama’s Lukas competition. Quick post- will write more about this painting soon…

– Tesh Parekh






Memorial Day 2010- An original oil painting by Tesh Parekh

Memorial Day 2010. 16×20. Oil on linen.

I did this painting for Jerry’s Artarama’s Lukas paint competition. I had done one painting earlier for this competition “The Cloud”. It is currently on the display for sale at Cary Gallery of Artists.

I love the way evening light falls through front door of our home. My son Ian loves to stand there and watch the world outside. Originally I wanted to do his watercolor painting. So, I did a pencil sketch couple of days ago. The weather has been cloudy for last few days, so I could not make an exact sketch of what I wanted to paint. I also had paintings due for Jerry’s as well as North Hills competitions. I did a Plein Air watercolor for North Hills last week (see my earlier post). I wanted to do an oil as well, but, couldn’t get out to paint (North Hills competition is Plein air). So, I decided to work on at least one more painting for Jerry’s.

The painting was due today. And when I was being run over by the day yesterday, I finally saw the sunlight! I tried having Ian pose the way I wanted. Hmmm… Try that with a two-year old! So, I gave up and snapped few photos to use as reference.

I used linen as a support. Although I paint on both canvas and linen (sometimes on board), I prefer linen. Lukas paints are different from other brands I use. Those are all good paints and I enjoy discovering characteristics of each brand. I started to paint at 10:30 PM and stayed up to finish it this morning at 2 AM. When I was finished, I didn’t care if I will win anything. I enjoyed my little painting. One thing was certain: I will have dozen brushes to wash next day and Ian will be up in the morning! He did get up at 3 AM! And I still have brushed to wash!

Ian’s middle name is West. His grandfather was James West Hadnot. A fine fighter pilot and Col. in the US air force. World War II veteran. Today, when I remember him (he passed away in 2007), I remember many war stories he had shared with me. Some of those can make hair on your arms stand up. And here I was. Worried about little things. I had a very upsetting and bizarre incident involving one of my professional photography clients yesterday. Kept me busy all day. I couldn’t stop thinking about it as I painted. And there are some fine folks who are sacrificing their lives for this country. There is no secret message in my painting. It is a little painting done on the Memorial day. May be Ian will grow up to be like Col. James West Hadnot.

– Tesh Parekh


“Beaufort Sunset” and “Been there” win honorable mention

Beaufort Sunset. Gouache. 20″x16″.  Available.

This painting has received honorable mention in Jerry’s Artarama’s Turner contest. I paint in both transparent watercolors and gouache. I sometimes use gouache for accents in my transparent watercolor paintings. Although gouache is considered to be similar to transparent watercolors when thinned, I do not agree with that. In my opinion, just like Acrylics, Gouache has completely different characteristics. Thining with water does not make either medium behave like true transparent watercolors!

This painting is based on reference materials from my trip to Beaufort, NC (there is also a Beaufort in SC). Beaufort is a beautiful little coastal town. The Inn where we had stayed was right on the waterfront. I remember watching the beautiful sunset with my wife.

The painting is done on a watercolor board. I stayed up till early morning to finish it.

Another painting that received honorable mention in the same contest is “Been there” (below):

– Tesh Parekh

My paintings in NC State Fair

My oil painting “A Matter of Time” and Plein Air watercolor “State Capitol, Raleigh”  have been juried into NC State Fair (images of both were posted on my blog earlier). I sent in my entry at the last minute and was pleasently surprised! “A Matter of time” is also a winner in Jerry’s Artarama’s Lukas contest. My work is also on display at Cary Gallery of Artists (where I am a member), as well as Wake Forest Art & Frame and Wake Forest Coffee Company. Please check out!

– Tesh Parekh