Glossary: W

Watercolor - Paint composed of a water-soluble pigment. A painting with watercolors plays with levels of transparency.

Watermark - Making on paper, a translucent design is impressed when still moist by a metal pattern and visible when the paper is back-lit on a light table or held before light. In digital imaging, bits are altered within an image to create a pattern that indicates proof of ownership; so that unauthorized use of a watermarked image can then be traced.

Waterscape - A painting of or including a body of water. It might otherwise be called a marine picture, a seascape, a riverscape, etc.

Wavelength - The distance between one peak or crest of a wave of light, heat, or other energy and the next corresponding peak or crest. In that light has qualities of waves, the various colors of the visible spectrum differ in the length of their waves, from violet at 400 nanometers to red at about 700 nanometers. Just shorter than violet's wavelength is that of ultraviolet light and then x-rays, both beyond the abilities of human eyes to see. Similarly, longer than red and invisible to the unassisted human eye is infrared. Wavelengths are usually measured in units of nanometers (nm) or angstroms (Å). 1 nanometer = 10 angstroms. Also, see refraction, rhythm, and temperature.

Wax - Any natural, oily, or greasy heat-sensitive substances, including beeswax, ceresin, carnauba, tallow, paraffin, and microcrystalline wax. Most waxes consist of hydrocarbons or esters of fatty acids that are insoluble in water but soluble in most organic solvents. Natural or synthetic wax can be used as a binder in painting or sculpting. Paraffin or ozocerite is a petroleum byproduct, used in coating paper, crayons, and other products. Paraffin is an essential ingredient in candles. Wax is also necessary for modeling or carving forms used in casting.

Wet on Dry - is a technique in watercolor where a damp paintbrush is used on dry paper. It may cause sharper and dark-edged brush strokes.

Wet on Wet (Oil) - "Wet into Wet," The Direct Method or Alla Prima is an oil painting technique. The term "Alla Prima" is Italian for "at the first attempt," which is why it refers to this face-paced technique in which the work is completed before the first layer of the painting has dried up or is still wet. This technique was opposite the traditional oil painting technique or the Indirect Method, where the artist has to wait for one layer of paint to dry before applying the next one. With the "Alla prima" method, wet painting is applied over still-wet painting. Impressionists loved to use this technique because they could paint outside and complete the painting in one sitting instead of weeks. The primary benefit of this is the speed at which the work can be finished: hours instead of weeks.

Wet on Wet (Watercolor) - A watercolor technique in which the pigment is applied to damp paper resulting in undefined shapes and slightly blurred brush strokes.

White Spirit - White Spirit is a less expensive version of a low odor paint thinner or turpentine. It is suitable for cleaning brushes, but it is not so great for under-painting.

Woodcut - Technique in which the printing surface has been carved from a woodblock. The traditional wood block is seasoned hardwood such as apple, beech, or sycamore. However, a modern trend is to use more inexpensive and easily attainable softwoods such as pine. Woodcut is one of the oldest forms of printing. The Chinese first used it in the 12''' century and later in Europe toward the end of the 14th century.

Back to top.

Previous Next

Contact Form