I just learned how NOT to do something.  I'm working on a piece with three Koi and a turtle.  The turtle is swimming on top of the water and the fish are obviously under the water.  I thought this would be a good project to experiment with glazing.  I painted the water color, then painted my fish, (which I really liked), then I thought I'd take the water color, add glazing medium and paint several layers over the fish to create the illusion that they were under water.  It didn't work very well and if I'm going to save this piece it will mean painting the fish again basically from scratch. 

The glaze took away too much of the detail, so if I try again I guess I'll use a lot more of the glazing liquid and only a little paint.  Any thoughts?


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It's great that you're experimenting, Karyn!  It can take a bit of trial and error to get the glazing process down right, so it sounds like you've learned a lot already, even if it's because you learned how not to do something.  :)


I'd suggest adding more glazing liquid, and perhaps more water, and using a minimum amount of paint - just like you plan to do, really!  My glazes are usually really thin and watery.  Almost like a thin watercolor consistency.  Also, soft body paints (fluid acrylics) are better for glazing than the heavy body acrylics, which are thicker and therefore require more water/glazing liquid to thin them down to the right consistency for glazing.


Sounds to me like you are on the right track!



Thanks, Thaneeya, I repainted my fish and used a thinner glaze and it looks much better.  I'm thinking about adding a few more layers and maybe the tiniest bit of white, as I'm still not getting the effect of the fish being visually muted and looking underwater, although it is much better than before.  I'm using a satin finish on the glaze for the fish and I'll be using a gloss on the turtle that is swimming on top of the water.  I want him to look wet so I think gloss is the way to go.  It will probably be a few more weeks before anyone sees this one.



When I use the glazing technique, I take a drop, small drop, of Dr. Ph. Martin's concentrated watercolors mixed with acrylic glaze. The water color still retains the vibrant color without being overwhelming to the piece. Acrylics can come out too chalky or opaque.

Be careful when adding white to a glaze!  :)  Titanium white is opaque, and easily creates an obscuring glaze!  So actually today I went out and bought a tube of zinc white, which is more transparent.  I look forward to trying that.  Dusty's right, depending on the color, opacity can be a problem with acrylic glazes.


I like Thaneeya's tip about the soft body acrylics.  I'll have to try that.  

Hi friend, you only need the tiniest amount of color added to glazing medium. The ratio is generally 20% paint to 80% glaze 

Here is a video that I found to be extremely useful but most of all practise off the painting first to get the depth and consistency right before you apply it to your painting.




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