Glazing in Paintings

Tips and techniques on how to color mix by glazing in your paintings

Glazing is a technique takes patience to master. Simply put, a glaze is a very thin layer of paint that subtly changes the color of what it's painted over. It's learning just what the change in a painting when glazing will be take takes time. This compilation of all my articles on glazing will help you on your way to using glazes successfully in your paintings.
A glaze is a single layer of paint that's thin enough to allow what's already been painted to show through it to a large extent. Glazing is the term used for painting such a layer, for the technique of painting thin layer upon thin layer. Each new glaze builds up the depth of the color, and modifies what it's being painted over. In order to be successful, a glaze must be completely and totally dry before another is painted. More »

The pigments used in our paints have different properties. Some are very transparent, while others are very opaque and hide what they're painted over, and others are semi-transparent. Glazing works best with transparent pigments. The paint tube label may tell you what type of pigment it is, but it's simple to test for yourself. More »

Glazing a painting
Photo © Katie Lee
There's no need to reinvent the wheel, use the experience of other artists to help you master glazing, whether you're using oils, acrylics, or watercolors. More »
Canadian artist Gerald Dextraze believe glazing a an extremely forgiving painting technique and that it can be reduced down to two secrets. More »
Artist Brian Rice shares the things he's learned about glazing by trial and error over several years, the secrets of his success with this painting technique. More »
Image © Marion Boddy-Evans
Observe how glazing is used to build up color on a leaf from an initial layer of blue into something that's red and purple. More »
Painting glazes in watercolor
Image © Katie Lee
Botanical artist Katie Lee demonstrates how to build up color by glazing only with primary colors in a step-by-step demo of painting an oak leaf using watercolor. More »
Glazing painting technique
Image © Tina Jones
If building up colors by glazing isn't working, there are two things to check. First: are you glazing onto paint that is utterly, totally, and completely dry? The second, are your colors thin and transparent? More »
Find out what to do if you're having trouble with edges or ridges on your glazes, or the paint doesn't seem thick enough. More »