Ankita Popli

How to protect your artwork

We make our artwork ready, but our attention does not go towards protecting it. Just as we need an umbrella in the rain, in the same way, our artwork also needs protection.

The varnish gives good protection to your paintings, protects them and gives an intense look to the colours. We need to protect our paintings from moisture, liquid and dust. Apart from this, there are many particles in the air too, which can damage our painting. To avoid all this, varnish is a very good choice.

Varnishes are of five types. There is some glossy varnish that gives a more intense look to the colours and some have a matte finish which presses the colours slightly. Let’s see what suits us. 

  1. Damar Varnish – Damar varnish is the artist’s number one choice for oil paintings. It is made from a mix of damar resin, alcohol and turpentine. It gives a high glossy finish to the paintings and is available in both brush and spray.
  2. Gloss Varnish – As the name itself suggests, this varnish gives a glossy finish to your artwork. If you want to give a shiny look to your painting then you should opt for gloss varnish.
  3. Matt Varnish – Like gloss varnish, the name of matte varnish also tells its nature. If you do not want to make your painting look shinny then you should go for matt varnish. But keep in mind that due to being a matt in nature, it can also show dullness to the colours of your artwork.
  4. Satin Varnish – Neither you want to give a proper gloss finish nor a matt look to your artwork, then you should try satin varnish. This will give your painting a semi-glossy finish.
  5. Retouch Varnish – Retouch varnish is required when you are working on an old and already varnished painting. With this, you can work on the dull areas of old paintings.

So now we know what varnish is and how it works. Apart from this, we have also selected the type of varnish we want to use in our painting but we have not yet learned how to apply varnish to the artwork. So let’s take a look at its process.

  1. First, select a clean area where there is no connection to the dust.
  2. Clean your artwork thoroughly with a dry cloth and place it on a flat surface.
  3. Now shake your varnish bottle properly and pour some of it in an open vessel.
  4. Start applying varnish with a large and soft brush. For better results, apply horizontal strokes from the top to the bottom.

While applying varnish, take care that you do not repeat in the same areas, otherwise, it will look very uneven. Keep in mind that you will not apply the second coat until the first coat of varnish is dry. Now until the coat of varnish is dry, you have to protect your painting from dust.