When you find yourself looking twice at a painting you thought was done and spotting areas you wish were brighter or warmer, there are two classic techniques that can give you a second chance. Artist and instructor Katie Liddiard says that glazing and scumbling can be your best friends when it comes to refining a finished painting. Working on a painting that she completed some time ago, Katie points out areas that she’d like to alter slightly without having to repaint the entire section. Specifically, she identifies the center of a gorgeous, pearly seashell where she’d like to add a hint more pink with glazing, or adding thin layers of medium with small amounts of color added. Using just a small amount of Oleogel medium and a bit of one of the quinacridone pinks from her palette, Katie slowly paints the area of the seashell with a subtle touch, then adds in a touch more of pink shade from her palette. This glazing technique can add depth to any painting, she says, as you build up very thin layers.
With glazing, you can alter the color slightly or warm it up, pull back if you need to by removing a bit, and work with these thin layers of paint to get the desired effect. Katie’s second refinement technique of scumbling is similar, but adds light where glazing can deepen the color. Katie uses a mixture of her Oleogel medium, the desired color, and white to add highlight areas to her painting and add contrast for that little extra something that refines and completes the artwork.