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Step 7 – How to Prepare your Canvas to Paint


Today, we are going to show you how to prepare your canvas before you start painting. You can start for example and paint on a regular canvas. It makes it a little rough, but sometimes people like to paint that way.

If you are looking to do with detail you would like to do something that is a little smoother even if you are doing a portrait and how you do that is with products called Gesso it comes in a plastic tube tub or it comes in a metal container, it depends on how much you are going to use.

This one here for example is half way prepped. The one that I was showing you here, we are going to take some of this and show you exactly what we do. We take some with our fingers and what we do is we rub it into the cloth and we do this all the way over through the canvas until we fill it up.

After that we let it dry and of course you get dirty, we let it dry and then we run more Gesso over it and this will up two or three coats will make it smooth so you won’t get the roughness. Then what we do is we take the canvas or the panel or the board that you have done and you take a sandpaper and use sand with rough sandpaper lightly along your canvas until it becomes smooth.

Once you do that you have problems with canvases being loose and how you change that, is you take a spray bottle and you spray on the back of the canvas, rub it in a little bit and let it dry and what happens is the cotton in the canvas will shrink and it will tighten up your canvas.

Even if you have a painting already done and it tends to get bowed you can do the same thing and it won’t hurt your painting that is finished. You just spray a little water on the back of the canvas and it will shrink it a little and it will straighten it right out.

1 Comment
  1. kalpa says

    Thank you for the tip, about the board or canvas bowing…!

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