There are so many techniques that are applied by the artists to make a work look attractive and unique. An artist wants to express his or her thoughts in different ways and techniques. Color washing is also such a kind of technique that has been in vogue for a long time. Color washing techniques have a rustic look, but can be used in any setting using appropriate colors. The effect works best with earthy or natural colors. Color washing works best if it is done in layers. This creates depth and warmth. Most color washed surfaces have 2-3 layers of color. Color washing can be done using either oil based or water based paints. However it is easier and quicker to use latex based paints
For color washing a base color is applied to the surface and allowed to dry completely. After the base color dries, the top coat is applied using random strokes. Each successive layer should show through the previous layer in color washing. The purpose is to let one color show through the next layer and create depth. Once the final layer dries a clear varnish can be applied for additional protection. Varnished surfaces are suitable for humid areas. The amount of color which shows in the successive layers of the color washed surface can be controlled. While color washing, care should be taken so that none of the layers are completely covered. Only the base coat can be applied using sponges, all other layers should be painted using brushes only. Color Washing is very easy and can be done without professional expertise. Color washed surfaces have a cross hatch pattern on them and create an effect of casual elegance.