How to prepare a canvas

Proper canvas preparation is not talked about very often anymore in art classes.  I have discovered as a professional artist, that I need to make sure that every procedure and process is followed to the letter to avoid catastrophes.  As I begin preparing several canvases for paintings for 2020, I remind myself that one of the most important parts in the process of painting is good substrate (surface) preparation.

Plan ahead

Another factor in the creation of a painting is that you have to know what materials you are intending to use on every canvas, because each material has it’s nuances and surface requirements. You also should know what kind of imagery is going on each canvas beforehand which in itself is a topic for another day.

Follow the product instructions

There are precise rules and processes to be followed if you want to guarantee a positive outcomes both at the front and backend end of your creative process.

A canvas requires two to three coats of high quality gesso and a 3 to 6 month drying time before starting a painting.  This rule applies for acrylic painters as well.

One of the biggest errors artists make is the failure to read the manufacturers instructions and the labels on the products they are using. A lot of people rely on what others have told them to do. Products change as do the instructions on use. Read the labels carefully!