The real magic is in the painting process. The first step is to introduce some mild texture where it's smooth. This subtle texture is created by brushing on some heavy bodies primer. The best I've ever found is Coastal Enterprise's FSC 88 - WB (the WB stands for water based. It comes out of the can the thickness of cream. It dries quickly and if you use a small brush and leave the brush marks in on purpose it dries with that same look.
Then come three coats of acrylic paint. We use a top quality house paint... or in the case of this plaque a gold metallic made by Modern Masters. Three coats are important if you want the piece to last.
For them to work properly you need texture and the more the better. We load on the glaze and then wipe it off before it dries. The glaze stays in the lower areas and wipes off the raised areas. For wiping we use soft terry towel material. It's the best and we go through pickup loads of rags each year. (We buy used towels at the thrift store.)
The first glaze on the Daniel plaque was made by mixing some gold with a teeny bit of metallic cherry and mixing this paint with an equal amount of clear. For the clear we use untainted deep base paint of the same brand. To make the custom mix deeper colours the paint stores start with a clear base. It looks milky in the can but dries clear. The paint store folks will look at you weird but this is what we buy to make our glazes.