Digital Tour – Vivid View: The Art and Science of Paint Analysis


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Glossary of Terms

Architectural Paint Analysis – The scientific analysis of architectural paints, metallic coatings, and clear and translucent finishes

Architrave – The linear ornamental moldings and bands that surround a window, door, panel, niche, or other opening

Calcium carbonate – In historic paints, calcium carbonate (chalk) serves as a base ingredient in whitewashes and a thickener in oil paints

Cross-polarized transmitted light illumination – The intersection of different light waves used to illuminate a sample in order to highlight different elements

Cross-section – A profile view of a paint or varnish flake that reveals the layers of that sample, from the earliest (bottom) to most recent (top)

Distemper coating – A traditional paint made with dilute animal hide glue and pigments which is well-suited to painting on wall plaster

Faux graining – The artistic imitation of wood or wood grains in various media

Flax plant– The fibers of the flax plant can be processed into linen yarn for thread and the seeds can be used to make linseed oil

Flocked wallpaper – A treatment created to mimic a textile, composed of chopped wool fibers adhered to wet block-printed patterned paper

Generation – For paint analysis, a reference to an individual layer of paint or combination of finishes that comprise one decorative scheme

Iron oxide – A pigment category derived from natural clay sources, typically yellows, oranges, reds, and browns

Limewash – An inexpensive coating consisting of lime, water, and sometimes colored pigments

Optical microscopy – A type of microscopic analysis that uses visible and ultraviolet light for illumination and a range of lenses to magnify samples

Paint stratigraphy – The arrangement of layers of paint and varnishes over time

Polarized light microscopy – Optical microscopic analysis using transmitted light controlled by polarizing filters to illuminate a sample

Quatrefoil – A four-lobed foliation in architecture

Ultraviolet (UV) light – A wavelength shorter than that of visible light but longer than x-rays; used to illuminate a sample in order to highlight different elements