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Question about Painting on Top of Dry

Hi all,

I am really new to painting so I just want to learn what other people do in this scenario. I wasn't able to finish this painting in one sitting so it is dry now. I later realized the highlight in my painting is too small. Is it ok to just paint over the existing dry part? Any upsides or downsides to why you do or don't do this is your process?

Also, I find myself lost in the minutiae while painting and mixing color to match my reference picture and lose sight of the big picture of light and dark areas overall. Any tips?



  • Also, I know this subject is incredibly boring but I am just trying to learn the basic skills of matching color and painting what I see so I don't like to spend too much time finding something to paint.
  • lightbulb3900

    Should be fine to proceed as is. However, a light ‘oiling out’ will make progress easier.

    By focussing on mixing and matching the broad areas of light and dark should take care of themselves.


  • There's no problem to putting wet paint over dry, @lightbulb3900. Some people prefer to paint that way. To avoid getting too bogged down in detail and forgetting the whole I often squint and paint only the detail I can still see through the squint. :)
  • There is probably a lot more layered painting in the history of art than there is wet in wet. If not more, then certainly as much. So many of the great painters glazed their paintings, meaning thin, transparent coats of paint (usually with added medium) over the dried previous layer. I wouldn't worry at all about it.

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