Glossary

Palette: The surface on which a painter will mix his colours. Also the range of colours used by an artist.

Pastel: A paint medium of powdered colour mixed with gum Arabic to form a hard stick.

Pastiche:

  1. An artistic work that contains elements borrowed from other sources.
  2. An artistic work in imitation of another’s style.

Patina: The fine green rust or verdigris with which ancient bronze statues, etc, become covered as a result of exposure.

Pencil: A mixture of graphite and clay in the form of a stick and covered with a hard casing.

Perspective: In art, the representation of the three dimensional view in a two dimensional space.

Pigments: Particles with inherent colour that can be mixed with adhesive binders to form paint.

Pop Art: A realistic art style that uses techniques and subject from commercial art, comic strips, posters etc.

Preservative: A material that prevents or inhibits the growth of micro-organisms in organic mixtures.

Pressionism: Concerned with forms and movement in sculpture and aesthetics of the industrial age. Works in this style, which were deliberately non-representational, made use of plastic, glass and wood.

Primary Colours: The colours red, blue and yellow which in painting, cannot be produced in his way are known as secondary colours.

Primer: Coating material, usually white, applied to a support to prepare it for painting.

Provenance: The date, origin and subsequent history of a work of art.

Pentimento: A part of a painting that has been painted over by the artist but later reappears.

Pointillism: In painting, the practice of applying small strokes or dots of colour to a surface so that from a distance they blend together.

Portraiture: The art of painting, drawing or sculpting the likeness of someone, either the face, the figure to the waist or the whole person.

Post-Impressionism: A blanket term used to describe the work of artist in the late 19th century who rejected Impressionism.

Priming: An undercoat or size used to prepare a surface of painting.

Primitive:

  1. Belonging to the Pre-Renaissance period in art.
  2. Characteristic of often deliberately unsophisticated modern works of art or of artists working in that subsequent.

PVA: Polyvinyl acetate, a man made resin used as a paint medium and in varnish.

Pavilion: The lower part of a diamond, located between the girdle and the culet.

Pavé Setting: Multiple small stones set in a curved or flat surface and held in place by prongs.  The prongs are created by hand from the surrounding metal with the use of a fine sharp gravers tool.  The tables of the stones will all be level with the jewelry surface.

Pear-Shaped Cut: Also known as teardrop-shaped, a pear-shaped stone features a rounded bottom edge that comes to a point at the top.

Pearl: Organic gemstones created from layer upon layer of nacre and produced in mollusk shells.  Pearls are the traditional anniversary gemstone for the third and 30th year of marriage and the birthstone for June.  Today, because of their rarity in nature, most pearls are cultured.  For more information, visit our Cultured Pearl Guide.

Peridot: This gemstone is known for its yellow-green color.  Peridot is the birthstone for August and the traditional gift for the 16th wedding anniversary.

Pink Gold: The result of combining pure gold with large amounts of copper.  Also called "Rose" or "Red" Gold.

Platinum: A durable precious metal, valued for its white color and purity.  Platinum is hypoallergenic. To be called platinum, it must contain at least 90% pure platinum (10% other metals).  (585 Platinum contains 58.5% platinum, 41.5% other metals.)

Polish: The condition of a diamond or metal's surface.

Post: The metal part of the earring that goes through the pierced earlobe.

Princess-Cut: A type of cut featuring a square stone.

Prong Setting: A stone rests in a metal base with prongs that extend to its girdle, securely holding it in place.  Four-prong settings are the most popular, but some settings use more for added security.

Proportions: How a diamond's angles and parts relate to one another.

Push On Screw Off Earring Backs: A small metal back is pushed onto the earring's post and unscrewed when removed.

Payal: An anklet, or piece of jewellery usually worn around the ankle. Also known as paizeb and tora paon

Polki: A diamond that has few facets and appears to have little fire or brilliance. Sometimes used to refer to unpolished or rough diamonds. Polkis are frequently used in kundan and jadau jewellery.

Peacock: A rare variety of black or Tahitian pearls that have a dark green color and overtones ranging from pink to purple.