Your blog is so helpful to me as a beginner with oil paints. Is there a post about how you prepare a canvas or gessobord before painting? Thats my dilemma right now, how do I get a good smooth surface to start with? There are so many different methods and they all sound really time-consuming.
Hey Katherine,Thank you, I did a post a couple of years ago on preparing a Gessoed Illustration board, but I cant seem to find it in my archived post. I use Cresent No. 300 cold press Illustraion Board. I Gesso it with Sennelier Light Gray Acrylic Gesso. I use a 2 inch brush to wet the front and back of the board before applying the Gesso. Wetting the entire back of the board prevents it from warping while the Gessoed side dries. I apply 2 or 3 coats of light gray Gesso with a large 2 inch brush. I let each coat dry for about 20 minutes before applying the next coat. If I want a smooth surface, Ill lightly sand each layer with a 600 grit sanding block. I get them from Lowes. Sanding produces dust, so I recommend sanding outside. You may also want to wear a protective mask. I use a wet Viva brand paper towel to wipe off the excess dust before applying the next coat of Gesso. After the last coat of Gesso has been applied and sanded, Ill usually let it dry for about 2 hours before painting on it with oils. As for canvas, I use only Claessens Linen C13 Double primed portrait grade, or New Traditions L600 panels. Both are very smooth but, the New Traditions L600 panels are ultra smooth and quickly becoming my favorite surface to paint on. No preparation needed.I hope this helps a little, all the best, Jasonp.s. The oil painting mediums Ive been using as of late are Gamsol, M. Grahams Walnut Alkyd, and Stand Oil.
Hey Katherine, One more thing I forgot to mention. If you already have white Gesso, you can tint it with any black acrylic paint. I like a light middle tone gray. Golden Acrylics used to make a gray Gesso but I cant seem to find it anymore. I believe it was called Golden Gesso ground Neutral gray N7.Sennelier Light Gray Acrylic Gesso is an almost exact match to the one Golden use to make.
Absolutely precious! Jason, I, too, am a great admirer of James Gurney. : ) I'm going to try out your "raw umber sorta as a drying agent" idea...interesting.I found your blog through Frank Ordaz's, so glad I did. You are an inspiration!
Hey Leigh, Thank you, I really appreciate your kind comments.
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