Glazing an oil painting
To continue with Methods of applying paint, let us recall how paint can be thinned by a medium to become transparent and then applied in thin layers as a glaze. These layers are often applied in multiples, with some paintings utilizing dozens of layers of glaze. When glazing, it is necessary to paint slowly and build colors up gradually. Due to the paint being thinned and weak, a benefit to this process is that mistakes can be easily corrected.
By applying paint as a glaze, it is possible to fully control the intensity of color as well as choose whether the surface becomes glossy or matte. Building up layers of glaze will cause the surface to become luminescent and allow the viewer to peer through the layers onto the opaque paint below. While it is not necessary to glaze an entire painting, as some of the best works only utilize glazes to accentuate small details, this traditional technique is very important, especially when creating realistic, flowing water.