Do You Use Canvas Boards When Painting With Acrylics?

I do.

And you should consider this as well if you’re painting with acrylics.

This morning I received this question from one of my Australian students wanting to know if besides cave walls, had I used canvas boards, my opinions and what types of preparation do I use in order to paint on this structure.

I like using canvas boards for practice with acrylics. I still love canvas for commissioned and exhibition works. But for everyday painting and practice with acrylics, canvas boards are my top choice.

Here’s why …

Acrylics are self leveling. This means that no matter how thick or thin you apply the paints, as they dry, their relief properties fade so that the painting surface is leveled. Not so with oils. If you have chunks of oil paints on your canvas, they will dry as dried chunks of oil paint. But with acrylics they seem to melt down so that the entire surface is flat and smooth.

This has the advantage of being able to put six or seven paintings one on top of the other as you practice away through the day. You may be able to get more than six or seven paintings, but be on the lookout for crumbling, flaking and other surface degeneration of the acrylic paint on the canvas board.

The only special thing I do in preparing the canvas board for painting is to make sure the surface is clean and to paint the surface once with Black or Gray geso if I so desire a darker color. Otherwise, I just wipe the surface cloan and start painting.

For my better works and commissioned painting, I still like canvas. I like the feel of the brush against the canvas. And one can use a canvas for practice just like canvas boards. Paint five or six practice paintings on the canvas and the last one would be a commissioned work.