David Cranswick's Glazing Medium ('Liquid Glass')

This is my most tried and trusted glazing medium to date, and the one used for most of my paintings in the last few years. It is known as 'liquid glass' and I have watched David Cranswick preparing it in a rather alchemical manner, using his secret recipe.

As can be seen in the photo below, the medium is a light golden colour and has a semi-transparent gel-like consistency. At the time of use, approx one part poppy oil is added to two parts of the medium, and (if desired) a couple of drops of dryer, such as cobalt siccative can be added to speed drying.

In use, the medium is best applied to the surface of the canvas or panel and then rubbed back by hand until it is barely there. Used in this way, it offers a smooth surface to paint into for the best part of a day without starting to drag, as long as too much siccative has not been added. It is generally dry enough to start painting the next layer the following morning.

One benefit of this medium is that it gives a nice level of translucency and gloss to each layer, without being overly shiny. It does not thin the paint causing brush strokes to disappear, so it is possible to be a little 'painterly' with it. Also, you do not need to varnish the finished painting, as the medium gives a varnish-like finish.

I would advise anybody wanting to know more about this medium to contact David Cranswick directly (http://www.davidcranswick.com/) or wait for his book to come out!  In the meantime, the medium is available for sale at Cornelissen & Sons of London.

Various examples of my work painted using this glazing medium can be found in the landscapes and still life pages. These pages include links to step-by-step images showing how the paintings were built up in layers.

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