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How I do a final varnish coating on my paintings

By January 13, 2017 How To No Comments
Liquitex Satin Varnish

Liquitex Gloss and Matte VarnishHi folks, I have tried several different final varnishes so far with mixed results, which is really stressful because your coating a FINISHED painting you have been working on for how long? I have coated paintings and then quickly tried to wipe off a foggy varnish, or it catches and balls up! It makes you crazy! I have found two methods that have worked well and are consistent, the stress is still there, just greatly reduced. I used to mix two Grumbacher varnishes with equal parts water, 1/3 gloss, 1/3 matte and 1/3 water, carefully blending them together to keep bubbles down. This mix was quite thin and dripped readily off of my brush. I really like that this particular mix was somewhat thin, it felt like it was ¬†filling every little groove on the surface, while drying quickly. This method would take two applications or coats, ending with a satin finish that I really like. Being who I am I ran out of the Grumbacher and had to quickly varnish a piece I had sold, I couldn’t find the Grumbacher I used so I tried Liquitex Gloss and Matte Varnishes. They come out of the bottle much thinner than my tried and true Grumbacher but I still mixed in a little water trying to maintain my 1/3 of each formula. Well it got cloudy as soon as I applied it, scary! I know some varnishes cloud at first then clear as they dry but this was not clearing up so I wiped it off, it was a mess but salvageable. My mistake was the water and wanting a Satin finish. The Liquitex Final Varnish was thin enough and didn’t need the water so I went back looking for a Satin finish, which is what I use now. I pour the varnish out into a glass ramekin or bowl adding no water and I apply it with a fan brush, brushing both horizontally and the vertically, finishing with horizontal from top to bottom. I let the first coat dry for a few hours then do a second coating. On the finished painting below you can see a little glossiness on the right hand side just in front of the brush. This is the satin Finish I want, it protects and enhances the artwork! Happy Painting!Liquitex Satin VarnishVarnish Brush Direction

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