The Michael Harding Difference:

The Michael Harding range contains superb, modern lightfast and ancient oil colours. All of Michael Harding handmade oil paints have incredible tint, concentration and saturation power, unlike any other oil paint. Pigments are finely ground with steel or stone mills, according to the pigment’s properties. The finest oil colours are blended to a buttery, harmonious texture that creates the luminous colours and chroma unique to Michael Harding’s Artist Oil Colours. ​Fillers are​ not​ used, which maximizes coverage and lightfastness, ensuring colours remain luscious over time. These powerful oil paints have the highest concentration of pigment available today. And artists can be assured of the paint’s longevity because the pigments resist fading by UV light and the oil delivers exceptional film strength.

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The History Behind Michael Harding Oil Paints and Artist Materials:

Painter Michael Harding founded Michael Harding Art Materials Ltd. in 1982 because he felt compelled to. While he attended art college in London, Harding kept trying to replicate the paint vibrancy and surface of Rembrandt’s works. But these qualities were not possible to achieve with commercially available oil paints, which almost seemed like a different medium altogether. So, Harding exhaustively researched the methods and techniques used to create the Old Masters oil paints. And he began to grind his own. With a growing sense of discovery, over time Harding succeeded in building and replicating the colours and brush-out qualities of the Old Masters oil paints. He leapt forward as an artist. And friends noticed, borrowing some of his paints, coming back for more, seeing their own work improve. They had breakthroughs too and their material was sincere and more vibrant. Within weeks, word of mouth spread. The Victoria & Albert museum and other notable British institutions contacted Harding. “Everyone wanted these paints.” So, Harding went into business and began to make paints in earnest. Demand grew and grew. Today, Michael Harding’s artist oil colours ship to twenty-seven countries, where they are used by thousands of notable artists.

Their coveted handmade “Old Master” formula paints are available in these colours: Hand Made Stack Lead White, Genuine Vermilion, Lapis Lazuli, Genuine Naples Light and Dark, Lead Tin Yellow Light and Lemon, Rose Madder, Burnt and Raw Sienna, Terre Verte­­, Vandyke Brown, Italian Brown Ochre, French Yellow Ochre and Italian Green Umber. In all there are 100 colours of both ancient and modern pigments. Michael Harding tubes have a real colour strip on the label so the artist knows exactly how the oil paint will look on the canvas. Every label contains essential information such as drying speed, type of oil, tint power, and the colour index number(s) showing the pigment identity and confirming its lightfastness. Through meticulous craftsmanship, Michael Harding artist oil colours are made with the highest integrity.


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Stack Lead White - Michael creates this pigment himself in small handmade batches following the time-honoured procedure used by The Old Masters... Read More

Using this historic technique, every particle of Stack Lead White is randomly different. So every conglomeration of pigment particles on a nanoscale behaves differently. This is precisely the beauty of Stack Lead White. With industrially-made pigments, every particle is identical. So conventional paints cannot be used to create the brush strokes of the whites from centuries ago.


"Michael Harding paints are the finest I've ever worked with. They are buttery, beautifully consistent and are the most luscious in chroma and tint. For both plein-air and studio work, it's my go to paint." - Quang Ho

“Michael Harding paints work perfectly for getting the color and edges that I want in my paintings.” - Jeremy Lipking

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