Here’s a before and after of our “Smoking Man” painting. This piece is an oil on a paper-like (inexpensive Masonite) board. It was kept in a damp environment, which caused the surface paint to split and curl. There was extensive, flaking paint loss over the surface. Our painting conservator was able to remove the old, discolored varnish. She then applied an isolation coat of a synthetic resin on the painting and used this as an acting adhesive to the flaking paint layer. Next came the tedious challenge of topically setting down the lifting paint areas as best as possible. Finally, it was inpainted and retouched with reversible restoration colors and a protective varnish was applied.
Notice how his face and shirt pop with color! The white of his cigarette and shirt are brighter and truer. You can really appreciate the brush strokes the artist used in rendering this man.