Glossary

  • A
  • One layer painting completed in wet on wet
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  • B
  • Gesso is a common acrylic binder for homemade paint. What is binder in paint? Binder refers to substances that hold the particles of pigment together in a paint substance. All paint includes a binder of some sort, as the binder is what keeps the pigment
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  • The Three Trees by Rembrandt, 1643, etching with burin drypoint in black ink on cream laid paper, 8 x 11. Burin definition A burin is a short steel rod cut to a diamond point that is used as a tool in etching and engraving. The tool is usually used to
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  • C
  • Milk based, water soluble paint.
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  • Hue, value, chroma : Here we see two different hues of violet with different levels of chroma. What is the chroma color theory? In color theory , chroma refers to the degree of vividness of a color, or how pure it is compared to its representative on
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  • Hue, value, chroma are demonstrated in this illustration, which shows hues next to their corresponding values . Hue definition in art Also called a spectral color, the hue is the traditional color name given to a specific wavelength of light in the light
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  • To understand a hue's value on a color mixing chart , imagine what shade it would be if it were turned into a black-and-white photograph. Color value definition Color values describe the degree of lightness and darkness of a color. Determining the
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  • A drawing medium made of compressed graphite or charcoal mixed with a wax or clay base.
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  • D
  • Darrell Brown used oil paints in this still life to produce core and cast shadows as well as highlights and reflected light. What is a cast shadow? An object’s cast shadow is the object’s adjacent shadow in which its outline is distorted.
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  • Lee Phillips won the February 2011 Watercolor Artist Creativity Workshop challenge with this watercolor landscape. “This is a painting done with drybrush with the exception of the sky, which was built up with three washes," he said. "After
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  • E
  • La Mia Gioia, Fred Wessel , 1996, egg tempera, 25 x 19. What is egg tempera painting? Egg tempera was a common painting medium during the 14th and 15th centuries, but has since fallen out of popularity. It is traditionally made from egg yolks and pigments
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  • A paint or painting technique that uses heated wax
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  • F
  • This piece by Richard McKinley, Minnesota Morning, 9 x 12, has three focal points as marked. Focal point art definition The focal point of a painting is the area in the composition to which the viewer’s eye is naturally drawn. It is essential to
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  • G
  • A tub of acrylic gesso What is gesso paint? Gesso is a mixture of chalk, glue, and white pigment that serves as a ground for paintings. Its most common variety is white, but it also comes in clear and tinted versions. If you intend to create an oil piece
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  • It's important to know the different effects of glazing vs scumbling paint . What is glazing paint? A thin layer of paint applied over a ground or another paint layer of a different color. Oil painting artists use transparent glazes to make colors
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  • Sacred Stones by Carla O'Connor 2006, gouache, 30 x 22 . Gouche meaning Gouache is an opaque water-based medium that drives to a matte finish and can be rewetted. Painting with gouache Gouache pairs well with watercolor, since they’re both water
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  • This painting en grisaille demonstrates how an understanding of light value is just as important as color for a successful result . Grisaille definition Grisaille (pronounced like Versailles) underpainting is an oil painting technique in which a composition
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  • H
  • The highlight of this drawing is marked HL, in the brightest part of the image . Highlights and shadows In painting light theory, highlights are the brightest part of the artwork. They are usually added toward the end of the artwork’s completion
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  • The horizon line of this painting is marked in blue . Horizon line definition The horizon line art theory is a horizontal line that runs across the paper or canvas to represent the viewer’s eye level, or delineate where the sky meets the ground
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  • I
  • Impasto can be seen in this close-up of an oil painting . What is impasto? Impasto refers to the texture produced by the thickness of pigment in a painting. Impasto is created when paint is thickly laid onto the surface so heavily that it leaves a visible
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  • Imprimatura underpainting is evident in this self-portrait by Leonardo Da Vinci, red chalk drawing, 1510-1515 . What is imprimatura painting? With its roots in the great Italian artists, the term derives from an Italian phrase meaning 'first layer
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  • L
  • Because J M W Turner used non-lightfast red pigments , the reds in this painting have faded significantly. By 1859, staff at the National Gallery of London had already noted that the vivid scarlets in this sunset had were dulled. We will never know what
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  • Understanding linear perspective begins with one-point, two-point and finally three-point perspective. Linear perspective definition Linear perspective art theory is a method of representing a three-dimensional object or volume of space on a flat surface
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  • M
  • Stick used to keep hand steady while painting detai
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  • O
  • The creation of lighter tones by adding white, as opposed to thinning the paint.
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  • P
  • Surface of the painting ground
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  • En plein air painting is simply creating your painting outdoors. What is plein air painting? En plein air is a French phrase that simply means "in the open air" - and it succinctly sums up the technique. Many artists paint exclusively this way
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  • Vertical line used as a drawing or painting reference
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  • R
  • This still life oil painting by Philip R Jackson demonstrates reflected color on the table in the reds of the tomato's mirror image. ( Tension Series: Goodbye Goldfish , 2004, 8 x 10 inches. Private collection.) What is reflected color? In art reflected
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  • A lighting technique taken from Rembrandt’s practices
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  • Hard organic or synthetic material used in paints and varnishes
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  • S
  • Brushing technique
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  • Organic material used as a varnish, in inks or sealing surfaces for paint.
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  • Drawing medium using metal wire in a holder
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  • T
  • This artist has used tint in art to create light shades of blue appropriate for the sky. Tinting color To tint art is is the process of adding white pigment to a color to lighten it. It is the opposite of shading, or adding black pigment to a color to
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  • Illusionary painting type or technique
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  • U
  • Initial paint layer to block in shapes for subsequent layers
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  • V
  • The above image demonstrates a vanishing point in one-point perspective , the simplest form of drawing perspective . What is a vanishing point in art? In drawing, vanishing points are the points at which lines appear to converge. It is a fundamental concept
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  • W
  • The above image compares three related painting techniques that often get confused: washing, scumbling and glazing . What is a paint wash? Put simply, wash painting is a hue or tint applied in a thin transparent layer. Color wash painting Washes should
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  • The above wet-on-wet painting tutorial demonstrates how the technique works as a watercolor pencil technique . ( Farmers’ Market Peonies , Kristy Ann Kutch, 2002, watercolor pencil on hot-pressed watercolor paper, 15 x 20 inches. ) What is wet on
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