How To Seal A Watercolor Painting: Tips And Tricks

How To Seal A Watercolor Painting: Tips And Tricks
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Watercolor paintings are delicate works of art that require proper care and protection. One way to preserve your watercolor masterpiece is by sealing it. In this article, we’ll discuss the steps and techniques on how to seal a watercolor painting.

Materials Needed

Before we proceed with the process of sealing a watercolor painting, you need to have the following materials:

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  • Watercolor painting
  • Spray fixative
  • Masking tape
  • Protective gloves
  • Well-ventilated room

Step-by-Step Guide

Step 1: Prepare Your Painting

Make sure that your watercolor painting is completely dry before you begin the sealing process. You may use a hairdryer to speed up the drying process if needed. Place your painting on a flat surface and use masking tape to secure it in place.

Step 2: Protect Your Work Area

Sealing a watercolor painting requires a well-ventilated area. This is to prevent the fumes from the spray fixative from causing harm. Cover your work area with a protective sheet or newspaper to avoid any accidental spray marks.

Step 3: Wear Protective Gloves

Wearing protective gloves will prevent any fingerprints or oils from your hands from damaging your painting.

Step 4: Apply Spray Fixative

Hold the spray fixative approximately 10 inches away from the painting and spray a light coat evenly across the surface. Allow the painting to dry for a few minutes before applying another coat. Repeat this process until you have applied three to four coats of fixative.

Step 5: Let the Painting Dry

After the final coat of fixative, let the painting dry for at least 24 hours before handling it. This will ensure that the fixative has completely dried and settled.

Tips and Tricks

Use a Quality Spray Fixative

Choose a high-quality spray fixative that is specifically designed for watercolor paintings. This will ensure that the fixative won’t damage the colors or texture of your painting.

Apply Light Coats of Fixative

Don’t apply heavy coats of fixative as it may create a yellowish tint on your painting. Apply light coats and wait for them to dry before applying another coat.

Use a Dust-Free Environment

Make sure that the area where you are sealing your painting is free from dust and debris. Dust particles can stick to the surface of the painting and ruin the final product.


In conclusion, sealing a watercolor painting is an essential step in preserving its quality and longevity. By following the steps and tips outlined above, you can ensure that your watercolor painting remains vibrant and protected for years to come. Remember to use a high-quality spray fixative, apply light coats, and work in a dust-free environment. Happy painting!

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