Glaze (painting technique)

Glaze (painting technique)

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Glazes can change the chroma, value
Lightness (color)
Lightness is a property of a color, or a dimension of a color space, that is defined in a way to reflect the subjective brightness perception of a color for humans along a lightness–darkness axis. A color's lightness also corresponds to its amplitude.Various color models have an explicit term for...

, hue
Hue is one of the main properties of a color, defined technically , as "the degree to which a stimulus can be describedas similar to or different from stimuli that are described as red, green, blue, and yellow,"...

 and texture of a surface. Drying time will depend on the amount and type of paint medium used in the glaze. The medium, base, or vehicle is the mixture to which the dry pigment is added. Different media can increase or decrease the rate at which oil paints dry.

Often, because a paint is too opaque, painters will add special media or a lot of medium to the paint to make them more transparent for the purposes of glazing. While these media are usually liquids there are solid and semi-solid media used in the making of paints as well. For example, many classical oil painters have also been known to use ground glass and semi-solid resins to increase the translucency of their paint.

Oil painting

In oil painting, the simplest form of a glaze is a thin, oily, transparent layer of paint spread over the top of an opaque passage that has been given some time to dry. Light travels through the glaze and is reflected back off of the opaque layer below. This can cause a glowing effect similar to looking at a brightly lit white wall behind a film of colored cellophane. The thin oily layers of a glaze can facilitate the rendering of details that would be more difficult with opaque paints -- e.g. the complexities of skin tones.

When multiple layers of glazes are used, the colors in all visible layers can appear combined. However, the pigments are not physically mixed, since the paint is left to dry before each successive glaze is applied. The artist may apply several layers of paint with increasing amounts of oil added to each successive layer. This process of applying the fat layers (more oil in the painter’s medium) over the lean layers (less oil) can minimize cracking; this is the "fat over lean
Fat over lean
Fat over lean refers to the principle in oil painting of applying paint with a higher oil to pigment ratio over paint with a lower oil to pigment ratio to ensure a stable paint film, since it is believed that the paint with the higher oil content remains more flexible.Oil paint dries at different...

" principle.

Many painters juxtapose glazes and opaque, thick or textured types of paint application (that appear to push forward) as a means to increase surface variety, which some painters feel increases a painting's drama, brightness and depth.

Wall glazing

When the technique is used for wall glazing, the entire surface is covered, often showing traces of texture (French brush, parchment, striae, rag rolling). Either oil-based or water-based materials are used for glazing walls, depending upon the desired effect. Kerosene
Kerosene, sometimes spelled kerosine in scientific and industrial usage, also known as paraffin or paraffin oil in the United Kingdom, Hong Kong, Ireland and South Africa, is a combustible hydrocarbon liquid. The name is derived from Greek keros...

 or linseed oil
Linseed oil
Linseed oil, also known as flaxseed oil, is a clear to yellowish oil obtained from the dried ripe seeds of the flax plant . The oil is obtained by cold pressing, sometimes followed by solvent extraction...

 may be used to extend the "open" or working time of oil-based glazes. Water-based glazes are sometimes thinned with glycerin or another wetting agent to extend the working time. In general, water glazes are best suited to rougher textures where overlaps of color are acceptable.

Glaze is also used in cabinet, furniture, and faux finishing.

Scumble is a technique similar to glazing, except that the coating is opaque, and is just painted on very thinly to allow bits of the paint below to shine through. Scumbling works by a similar principle as the pointillists use -- mixing colors optically. While most painters glaze with dark colors, Scumbling is more popularly used for lighter colors; especially atmospheric effects when rendering fog or clouds.

See also

  • Acrylic painting techniques
    Acrylic painting techniques
    Acrylic painting techniques are different styles of manipulating and working with polymer-based acrylic paints. Acrylics differ from oil paints in that they have shorter drying times and are soluble in water. These types of paint eliminate the need for turpentine and gesso, and can be applied...

  • Color wash
    Color wash
    thumb|250px|right|Example of a color wash in multiple huesA color wash is a popular technique in faux painting using paint thinned out with glaze to create a subtle wash of color over walls or other surfaces....

  • Faux painting
    Faux painting
    Faux painting or faux finishing are terms used to describe a wide range of decorative painting techniques. The naming comes from the French word faux, meaning false, as these techniques started as a form of replicating materials such as marble and wood with paint, but has subsequently come to...

  • Gangjingun Kiln Sites
    Gangjingun Kiln Sites
    Gangjingun Kiln Sites is a tentative World Heritage site listed by the South Korean government at UNESCO. It is a complex of 188 kilns. The kiln sites are located in Gangjin-gun, Jeollanam-do, South Korea near the sea...

  • Rag painting
    Rag painting
    Rag painting or ragging is a form of faux painting using paint thinned out with glaze and old rags to create a lively texture on walls and other surfaces....

  • Strie
    Strié is a popular form of faux painting using glaze and paint brushes to create a soft natural striped texture. thumb|250px|right|Example of the strie faux painting technique over raised stencil...

  • epoxy glazing
    Epoxy glazing
    Porcelain and ceramic fixtures are being more commonly glazed with 2 part epoxy compounds. The first component is a clear or opaque resin combined with a catalyst or hardener. The proper procedure requires that the non porous fixture be sand blasted to create a rough surface for the epoxy primer to...