Tutor(s): Tracey Chaplin
Location: Birkbeck College
This introductory / refresher four day course introduces the techniques necessary to identify pigments using the polarizing light microscope. The relevant theory and optical properties of materials are explained in lectures/discussions and course notes but the majority of the course is dedicated to learning in practice how to determine the optical properties of pigments and to use these to identify pigments.
Reference materials (both modern and historical pigments) are examined in groups according to both their optical properties and pigment colours so that by the end of the course students feel confident in pigment identification. Time will also be given to making suitable samples for analysis from pigment libraries and decorative surfaces.