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introduction   >  ART CLUB  >  Additional information  >  Art glossary

Art glossary

ABILITY OF BLENDING – the ability of mixing.

ADDITION – a part of the raw glass material, clays and glazes which facilitate melting process.

ADDITIONAL MIXTURE – putting coloured layers over each other in order to achieve brighter colours

AIRBRUSH – a small spray gun in the shape of a pen, which is used for small pictures or for work with detail

ALLA PRIMA – a technique when colours are not laid down in separate layers but only in one layer of covering.

AMORPHOUS – quality of solid materials which do not have regular spatial arrangement of atoms in a long distance (e.g. glass)

AROMATIC SUBSTANCES – substances which adjust the consistence of colours. E.g. synthetic diluents on the base of aromatic hydrocarbon – benzene, toluene, xylem. ARYL – a disperse colour made of artificial resin. It is resistant to external impact and its qualities are light permanency, flexibility and adhesion.

ASACIA GUM – a vegetal product (squash) of some tropical tree, e.g. Koa.

BALSAM – viscose liquor of natural resin and volatile oil gained from tropical wood

BASE – a surface prepared for painting.

BASE PAINTING – a substance forming the base surface for painting. It has also function to the isolate layer of colour from the base.

BINDING MATERIAL – a material connecting particles of pigment in a colour and joining them to the base (canvas). E.g. flax oil, yolk and other emulsions.

BITUMEN – a tar, tarred mixture soluble in oil or petrol. It is not used as a painting pigment anymore but only for graphic technique – lithography.

BLENDING – physical joining, combining neighbouring colours on canvas to reach escalation among single colours.

BLISTR – sepia dark brown colour used since the 14th century for drawing with quill or for flushing. It is gained from the black of beech.

BLUSH – hardening of lacquer while drying out which is caused by the atmospheric moisture precipitating elements in the lacquer

BUEN FRESCO – a technique of lasting painting for the plaster. It is based on application of pigment into the wet thin layer of calcareous plaster

CALLIGRAPHY – a decorative way of writing letters enlarged by illustrations or ornaments.

CASEIN – a binding material made of curd cheese.

COAL – a material for drawing made by carbonization of deciduous sprigs. E.g. beech.

COLLAGE – a technique of creating artwork by attaching slips, stickers or photos.

COLOUR TONE – a colour effect gained by mixing more colours, e.g. mixing red and blue creates violet

COMPLEMENTARY COLOUR – supplementary colour, which is mixed with another colour and creates black or dark tones of colour.

CONSTANCY OF THE LIGHT – a reaction of pigment exposed to the light during a longer time.

COVERING ABILITY – the ability of the top colour layer to make an opaque bottom layer. The opposite of opaque is opacity.

COVERING COLOUR – a covering watercolour (gouache). Covering ability of the colour is gained by admixing of white and pigment.

COVERING NUMBERS – a number determines the amount of colour or medium, which is needed for covering a certain part of the surface.

DENSIFIER – an additive giving a higher viscosity of a colour.

DEXTRIN – a substance which is created by calcining of dry starch

EMULSIFIER – a substance which causes formation and creation of liquor and emulsion.

EMULSION – a permanent mixture of substances which cannot be blended as e.g. oil and water. A natural emulsion is yolk.

ENCAUSTIC– painting technique which uses a colour mixed with beeswax

ETERIC OILS – partly volatile oily liquors which give flowers their typical smell

FADER – a kind of thinner for oil colours.

FILM – a fine layer of surficial layer of colour

FIXING AGENT – a fixing material which protects painting made by chalk, pastels, or charcoal not to be wiped of or smudged.

FRESCO SECCO – a painting technique on the wall covered by calcareous plaster, originally dry and then riddled. The paint is done by mixing colours in calcareous water, casein or egg.

GEL – disperse system where disperse particles create s network structure

GLAZE – glassy layer on the top of a ceramic product.

GLUE – it is used for preparation of canvas before using a base layer or to reduce absorption of the base.

GLYPTIC (INTAGLIO) – a graphic technique, lines are created directly into the surface, a wood block or a metal desk.

GOUACHE – a watercolour with admixture of covering white colour. For its character of fast drying colour, the technique of gouache doesn’t enable additional repairations. It is not a transparent colour as the aquarell is.

GRINDING – a disjunction of pigment particles by size, usually by sedimentation in water.

HATCHING – ways of making shades and shadows by crossing the lines.

HYDROPHILIC – to be able to retain water.

HYDROPHOBIC – to be able to repel water

CHEMICALLY PURE – a term used for a pigment not for a colour which contains more pigments. (e.g. zink white, titan white)

IDEAL MIXTURE – absolutely homogenous mixture, e.g. ideally mixed fusion of colour pigments

CHROMATIC PIGMENTS – colour pigments but not white, grey or black pigments

IMPASTO – a painting with thick, not diluted colour which is laid down with a knife or with a thick paintbrush

INTAGLIO – a way of printing when the colour is kept in the line and the furrow which are dug up or etched in the surface (gravure).

INTENSITY – the level of colour brightness

INTONACO – concerning the technique of buono fresco, it is the last layer of wet plaster which the colour is put on.

IODINE NUMBER – a measure of oil saturation.

LACQUER – a protective surface layer – film provides brightness or matted visage to painting.

LETTERPRESS – a technique of printing when a colour is spread on the raised surface of a block or a desk.

LIGHT EFFECT – an expanse of reflection or transmission of light by a colour.

LIGNIN – a basic part of wood tissue. Its acid elements turn the colour of paper to yellow.

LITHOGRAPHY – a printing technique from surface, from a stone or a metal desk, where the drawing was spread by oily chalk.

MAHLSTICK – a stick equipped with a small round pad used for supporting the hand during painting to prevent contact with the wet surface of canvas.

MEDIUM – an admixture component which determines characteristics of the colour and also the aid for melting of pigment.

MINERAL – inorganic, naturally existing compound.

NIELLO – a technique where metal or silver objects are paved with black metal alloys.

OIL COLOUR – a colour made by grounding of pigment powder mixed with oil.

OPAQUE COLOUR – opposite to transparent colour. Lighter tones are made by addition of white colour not by thinning.

OPTICAL MIXING – a perception of two or more different colours alongside as one colour.

ORGANIC – a structure of an animal or vegetal origin.

OVERLAY COLOUR – a colour which was softened by mixing with another colour or changed optically by another layer of different colour.

PALETTE – a portable kidney-shaped or squared mat used for mixing colours. It also means common colour range used by artist.

PASTE – a viscous material, something between solids and liquids. Usually solid material blended in liquid.

PASTEL – a colour chalk join with paint rock in a form of stick.

PENCIL CONTE – a special pencil of different hardness in the traditional range of colours – black, white, red. pH – a concentration of hydrogen ions in aqueous solution(pH 8–14 is alkaline, pH 7 is neutral, pH 1–6 acid).

PIGMENT – a solid coloured material in the form of small disconnected particles.

PLASTICIZER – a softener, admixture providing elasticity to binder.

POLYMER – a higher molecular material formed by polymerization.

POLYMERIZATION – a chemical reaction of some molecules in repeated connection into a bigger complex.

REDUCTION –a reduction of a colour – mixing with white colour.

RICHNESS OF COLOURS – the level of richness or intensity in a colour (pigment).

SATURATION – the intensity of colour or a simple bond in a molecule.

SECONDARY COLOURS – orange, green and violet colours in a colour circle among primary colours – red, yellow and blue.

SEPIA – a dark brown colour originally prepared from the liquid excreted by cuttlefish.

SERIGRAPHY – a silk-screen printing, technique of printing, extrusion of colour through the screen.

SGRAFFITO – the art technique, painting or drawing on the wall. Created by scraping of white stucco on the coloured base.

SHADOW – a painting artefact. Created by mixture of white and black colours or blue and violet.

SICCATIVE – the tool which speeds up getting dry. Used as an additive into oil paints.

SIZE OF PARTICLES – a diameter of pigment’s particles. While dividing pigment it is spoken about different diameters of pigment.

SMOOTHER – a tool used to smooth surface of a metallic desk or other roughness of different solid surfaces

SOAPING – creation of soap reaction by oil or lipoid joined with alkali.

SOLUTION – a liquid containing melted, solid material. It is different from suspension or colloidal solution.

SPATTERING – spattering of a colour by a tiff paintbrush or brush to gain a surface of irregular patches of colour. The similar effect can be reached by spray.

SPITSTICKER – a tool used in the process of woodcutting for making curved lines.

STIPPLE – a way of painting when a colour is spread as small dots on the canvas – it is an easier way for manipulation with the colour.

SUBSTRATE – a material which is the base for the basic surface of a painting.

SURFACE ACTIVE REAGENT – a remover of water tension in colour. A material used to increase the flow of colours on the surface.

THE TECHNIQUE OF DRY PAINTBRUSH – a process of painting when dry or stiff consistence of a colour gets into the canvas or base. It is caught on the rough fabric of canvas or through the colour structure on the surface. The part of the coat is then noticeable on the base and a dashed effect is created.

TEMPERA – a painting technique where yolk, glue, wax, resin etc. are used as an emulsion. In comparison to oil painting tempera has a different character: it gets dry faster and does not allow quick transition.

TEXTURE – (granularity), structure of flax (linen or wood.

TINCTURE – a colour or an addition of colour used for creating of coloured shades.

TONE – a level of brightness or murkiness in colours.

TRACTION – a motion of one layer of colour over another one. Later it causes cracks of the layer.

TRANSPARENT COLOUR – a translucent layer of a colour which uses the whiteness of the basic colour or other tones of under painting for its own effectiveness.

UNDERPAINTING – a preliminary coat of paint creating a preparative surface for next painting.

UNDERTONE – a certain colour of pigment used as a thin and transparent layer.

VEINING – a technique of painting when half-opaque or thin opaque colours are spread on underpainting. It makes parts of a colour bleeding from the lower layer of painting.

VERDACCIO – underpainting created by green colour.

VISCOSITY – measure of flowing which is characteristic for a colour or medium (e.g. thick oil has a higher viscosity than oil from flax seed of an alkalic and rafine characteristic).

WASH – a thin layer of transparent colour, especially used with the technique of watercolour art.

WATERCOLOUR – a colour gained by connecting of pigment and water soluble gum.

WAVINESS – a deformation of a wet sheet of paper during drying

WET INTO WET – a way of painting when wet colour is spread on another layer of a wet colour.

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