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Digital Subscriptions > The Artist > December 18 > Glazing with acrylics

Glazing with acrylics

Use acrylic mediums to produce glazes that you can layer for rich depth and subtle transitions in your acrylic paintings, says Rhéni Tauchid. With demonstrations

Professional-grade acrylic paint is really, really saturated. Used full strength, its bright undertones are obscured by the sheer intensity of the colour. Mediums draw out the colour’s nuances – the bright juiciness of its essence. The light they bring ramps up the power of any colour. The transparent or translucent colour of a glaze has a seductive quality, urging us to look deeper into a composition, hunting for the elusive colour veils laid down layer over layer. The surface appearance of a painting rich with transparent layers carries a life and depth that is not present in an opaque application.

Thin mediums can be tinted with colour in any proportion to create glazes. The more medium, the more transparent and desaturated the colour will be, though the addition of the medium brings light into the surface and creates a feeling of depth. When creating a glaze, think about proportions and test how your glaze will look from wet to dry. The more medium you use, the whiter the wet glaze will be. In thin films this will not be as apparent, but if you are applying a thick glaze layer, there will be a significant change as the medium clarifies and the colour asserts itself.

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About The Artist

Welcome to the December issue of The Artist, packed with inspiring, practical articles and demonstrations from top professional artists, all designed to help you improve your drawing and painting skills and techniques. Whatever your preferred medium, there's something for everyone, from how to use wet-in-wet watercolour to capture the mists of autumn, paint a still life in oils over acrylics, use aerial perspective to create distance and atmosphere in your landscapes, to advice on coloured-pencil techniques for botanical subjects. Learn how to glaze your acrylic paintings for greater impact, capture the shimmering light and movement of the sea in acrylics, choose colours for maximum effect for your flower paintings, plus why not try setting up a contemporary still life for something different this month. There's an insight into 'Pete the Street' Brown's approach to working en plein air, Charles Williams' questions what we want from art, and Sally Barton explains how to paint portraits of people's houses to commission. We also include the latest art news and a host of information about competitions to enter, books and art products, offers and more for your artistic enjoyment.