Glazing: Creating a Glow

                  thick pear painting blog

Notice the difference in the pepper and the pear paintings above. The peppers look luminous where as the pear looks luscious. The peppers were painted by Beverly Heinz-Lacey from the Monday night class,  as an exercise using transparent and opaque paint.  She did a fabulous job. Who would guess she is  new to painting? Check out the top of the pepper on the left, see the reflected light? Nice!  The peppers were glazed using transparent pigment and the background using opaque pigment. Glazing means applying thin veils of a darker color over a lighter color. This technique can be used by oil painters, watercolorists and, as is this case, acrylics. The objects seem to glow, especially when the surrounding area is dark and more opaque. With oils, the process is time consuming because you need to wait a week or so for each layer of glaze to dry, or you could use Liquin and it will dry over night. It is much quicker with watercolor or acrylics but you still need to dry the layers between applications.

The pear on the other hand, was painted with thick, opaque acrylics (check out the blog about a series to see more thick paintings). The pear painting was about fun and using thick paint. It is not about good versus bad or right verses wrong. There are lots and lots of ways to paint. We need to always consider why we are painting each piece. Ask yourself what you want to say about the scene or object and then choose the application of paint that suits your purpose.

Below is a color wheel using 2 opaque acrylic paint, Cadmium yellow light, Cadmium red light.  The blue used is Primary Cyan it is semi opaque (not as opaque as Cobalt or Brilliant blue). Because of this all the secondary and tertiary colors  created become opaque. Now look at the 5 swaths of color below the color wheel, they were created using transparent pigments, Ultramarine Blue and Quinacridone Magenta. See how they glow?  These are transparent staining pigments. Thank you Linda Meskie for letting us use your color wheel as an example.                                                                         color wheel 4 blog






Lesson : if you want a painting that glows use transparent paint (most tubes of paint tell you on the back if they lean more towards transparent or opaque) in thin glazes (consistency of light watercolor), dark over light. Be sure the underneath color is bone dry and that your brush is soft and it is helpful to use a medium with the oils (Liquin) and acrylics (glazing medium). It will help the paint to flow. I will write more about glazing in watercolor and oils in a future blogs. Please let me know if this is helpful.

It has been nice sharing with you. Enjoy the Holidays!

Thanks again for all my Christmas gifts, you guys are sooooooo generous and thoughtful. I am overjoyed with all my presents and well wishes. But most of all I am thankful you all are in my life. Happy New Year!!!!!!!!!!

About Pat

I love painting and teaching and I have owned The Artists Playground, in Newburyport for over 25 years.
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