Painting on Paper 1


Painting on paper…so different than painting on canvas.

When I’ve been working on my quilts and turn back to painting, I start on paper.  I start on small pieces of paper to warm up and re-acquaint myself with the feel of the paint.  I work the small paintings using the same layering techniques I use on canvas, but the first layer on paper is most important.  The paper rapidly absorbs the acrylic paint  to create a surface that looks stained, as opposed to painted.  I like to get this first layer just right because the layers to come will not completely cover this color.

For example, on this piece,  INDECISION, the red of the central line and the reds and yellows in the rectangles above and below the line were the first color “stains” applied to the paper.   The color remains clear and almost translucent.   Each subsequent layer obscures part of the underlying color.  I proceed slowly because it is difficult to get back to the previous layer when working on paper.  I keep the final layer rather transparent so that the previous colors shine through.

When working on paper, I usually work on two or three pieces at the same time so that the paint can dry thoroughly before I add another layer.  On canvas, I tend to concentrate on one piece at a time (unless I get stuck!) and blend my layers, because my substrate is much more durable.  I can scrape right through layers on canvas, even when they are partially dry.  On paper, I try to be sure of my color before I apply it, making each stroke more deliberate and planned.

It is wonderful to use different materials for different effects…I love clayboard, too…but that’s another post!…from the studio

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