Painting on canvas is not just as simple as it sounds, but we will break it down so that you can know how to go about it. There are two variations of paints used to print on canvas; we, therefore, have oil and acrylic paint, each of the above paints is best used on specific types of canvases. So, to create canvas prints from acrylic paints many painters would resort to using linen because it tends to be permanent thus the best and it also retails expensively.
If you find that buying linen is too expensive there is a lower budget option, which will save you tons of money and this is the “high-quality cotton duck canvas.” The latter weighs between 12-15 oz and can be used to achieve the permanent canvas paintings. Linen on the other hand still holds the first position as the best canvas material to use when creating professional canvas prints; acrylic is also just as popular simply because it is easy to work with and doesn’t take a lot of time to dry up.
How to prepare canvas for acrylic painting
Gesso is an acrylic base for treating canvas, so most of the new canvas materials are normally pre-treated with Gesso but at times it does help to add another coat. Gesso comes in varied colors to allow painter’s versatility when trying to achieve different colored backgrounds. If you are new to canvas painting, acrylic is the best place to start with because the artist-grade acrylic paints are water-soluble thus provide good blend-ability.
Oil painting on Canvas
Oil paint when used in the creation of canvas tends to exude a rich and vibrant color; the overall look is quite pleasing to the eye not to mention the freshness and the original smell derived from this type of canvas print. If you decide to use paint, you will be presented with two variations first we have the water-soluble kind of paint and the traditional oil paint.
Both of the above types of paintwork well with a brush or a palette knife during application and if the two mentioned tools are not able to achieve the canvas print that you are looking out for then you have the option of using the pigment bars.
And the main reason why many professional artist use oil paint on canvas is that it offers a good depth of color and is flexible, its applicability also varies and painters can use thin gazes that are normally diluted with turpentine or the densely thick impasto. Additionally, oil paint has a slow drying time obliterating any chances of color change, thus the artists can rework or even correct their pieces of art.
The moment you hear watercolor canvas, you are quickly tempted to think that this type of canvas print isn’t going to be interesting, and that is where you go wrong because there are special types of canvas made specifically for use with watercolors. And to make the watercolor canvas good for use, it is normally painted with Gesso.
Canvas Preparation for Water Colors
So you will first prepare the canvas with at least two coats of Gesso, but be sure to allow each of the coats to dry completely. You will then proceed to apply about 6 thin coats of watercolor ground, be sure to allow them to dry completely, you will then leave the canvas to rest for 24 hours before applying the watercolor paints.