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Tonking is an oil paint technique. Tonking is a very useful oil paint technique especially when you are starting to learn how to oil paint. When you learn to oil paint, you may use too much paint on your oil painting and the more oil paint colors you add, the messy and muddy your oil painting looks. When your oil painting is too 'full', you can remove excess oil paints by an oil paint technique called Tonking.

What is tonking?

Tonking is one of the useful oil paint techniques of removing excess oil paints from the oil paint canvas or oil painting.

How to do Tonking on an oil paint canvas?

To Tonk, simply put a sheet of absorbent paper over the areas of oil paint canvass that has too much oil paint colors on. You can tonk the whole oil painting if necessary. The sheet of paper can be newspaper or paper towel or other absorbent paper. Once placed on the oil painting canvas, gently rub the oil painting with your palm and carefully peel off the paper. By doing this, you are tonking the oil painting, thus removing excess oil paints from your oil paint canvas. Tonking often removes the outermost layer of the oil paint colors, leaving a thin layer or thin layers of oil paints behind making the oil painting perfect for more addition of oil paints.

Where does the word 'tonking' come from?

The word 'tonking' in oil painting comes from Henry Tonks who was a professor of painting at the Slade School of Art in London.

Why is Tonking useful?

Tonking is a useful oil paint technique because tonking solves and corrects many mistakes new oil paint artists often make which is over using oil paints in early stages of oil painting. Tonking can be done to an oil painting many times during the course of the oil painting. Tonking is similar to erasing mistakes made with oil paints.