This is a course in paint materials identification in paintings and architecture for conservation professionals. The focus of this course is the identification of pigments using polarized light microscopy (PLM). A practical introduction to PLM methods is taught using many examples from the world of pigments. A more thorough treatment of PLM theory and principles is covered in the Polarized Light Microscopy course.
This course also introduces students to other analytical methods used as confirmatory methods; these include microchemical methods, elemental characterization using XRF or SEM/EDS, Raman, and infrared spectroscopy. Students examine and sample paintings and architectural artifacts, prepare specimens for analysis, perform PLM analysis, and direct or perform further confirmatory analyses. Methods for characterization of binding media and support canvas materials are also discussed.