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Essential Painting Techniques for Artists

The painting process is one that requires a lot of self-discipline. While there are plenty of little tricks that can help you with your overall process, there are a few fundamental techniques that every artist needs to master. These techniques include brushwork, composition, colour, and lighting. Some others are listed below:

Here are the Essential Painting Techniques for Artists:

Building Up the Texture

Building up the texture of your painting is a very interesting process and one that most artists try to accomplish in different ways. You can use a variety of methods, including mixing the paint and building up the colour for adding textures. 

Dry Brushing

Dry brushing is a technique where you lay down the paint on a surface and then wipe it off. Usually, an artist first applies a paint mixture to a brush and then dabs the brush at an angle onto the canvas in very thin layers. The paint is then allowed to dry between each application, allowing the palette knife to expose new areas in the painting. Interestingly, it is done on almost every oil painting.


Sgraffito is an Italian word that means “to scratch out.” Using this technique, you can paint the forms of a landscape or figure by scraping away the paint with your thumb or a brush and revealing the underlayer of paint. The result is like opening a window on a hidden world of texture. 


Underpainting or priming is an important element of a painting, but it isn’t talked about very often. If you are a painter, you may be aware of the techniques involved in it. Whether you’re new to painting or you’ve been at it for years, learning how to do underpainting or priming is important since it can provide an opportunity to experiment with different colours and textures.

Blocking In

Blocking in is widely considered one of the most important preliminary steps in painting. This step involves preparing the canvas to create a solid base. Blocking in for your painting is similar to the value stages of drawing. For example, you paint your background, your values, and your outline in your drawing stage and it is not a full painting but more of a guide for you to work.


Glazing is the artwork practice of enriching the colours of a piece of art with thin layers of paint called glazes or mediums. Glazing can soften, enrich, add contrast, or alter the tone of a painting. It is usually the final step in painting a portrait and is used to change the colour or tone of the painting. Artists generally use this technique on watercolours and acrylics to achieve varying effects.

Painting With Mediums

Mediums are liquids used in painting that add transparency while changing the look of the paint, adding sheen and depth. They can also be mixed with other mediums to create special effects. Apparently, painting mediums are an important part of the painting process as they help the artists to create a surface that will support the paint. These liquids also add texture and density to the surface, which is crucial for certain painting techniques. 

As an artist, you spend a great deal of time selecting your art supplies and materials, but you may not give as much thought to the techniques you use to apply those materials to your canvas. Painting with mediums is an important part of your art-making process, and there are several different techniques you can use to get that ideal end result.

Painting is a hobby that has been around for centuries. Today, painters continue to create beautiful, artistic masterpieces in many mediums, from paintings on canvas to wood carvings to pottery. But painting is not just for interior designers or artists—it’s also an important skill for anyone looking to improve their personal and professional lives. Anyone interested can learn how to paint with these number of painting techniques. 

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