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LINDA'S TECHNIQUES: Laying down a Tea Wash

A tea wash is a very light layer of paint.   When using the tea wash to establish your highlights or a halo, the mixture is 80-90 percent water to pigment.  It also is made with transparent, staining pigments.  The leaves in this example were painted with Prussian Blue. 

The first step is to prime your element first by applying one coat of clear water for 140 weight papers and two coats of clear water for 300 lb paper. Priming ensures that your wash will have an even, smooth appearance and it allows you to create a gradation from top to bottom.  

Yet what is most important is that you allow the "sheen" on the paper to disappear before you lay on your tea wash or for that matter any layer of color.  If not, you will be working wet in wet and you may not be able to control the way the pigment rests/dries on the paper.

Happy Painting, Linda
Linda C. Miller Artist Naturalist Instructor

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