Art tip, A beginners guide to oil painting

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Canvas is a traditional support for painting, used for centuries by the masters, and it has endured in modern times as the support of choice. There are 2 main reasons why artists love to paint on canvas: its pleasing receptivity to the brush and its longevity. If you want to create a permanent artwork that will endure for centuries, you can’t do any better. Hardwood panels have also been used traditionally to create permanent art, but canvas is much lighter and easier to transport. Canvas is also your best option if you want to create a very large painting.

Canvas is generally made from either linen or cotton, natural fibers that are woven together and then stretched over a frame or glued to a panel. Each fiber comes in different textures or weights.

The texture depends on the weave, so a finely woven canvas is smooth and best suited to small, detailed works. A rough texture is preferred by painters who like bold brushstrokes and larger paintings.

The weight is dependent on the thread density and is measured in ounces per yard. The higher the weight, the better the quality. Try to avoid canvases with weights lower than 8-10 oz.

Linen is the best of the best and expensive. If you care about permanence and don’t mind paying for it, there is no better option. You can save some money by using a high quality cotton duck canvas, which should weigh between 12-15 oz. It’s cheaper than linen but is still a suitable choice for permanent paintings.










This is a painting I did on my own primed canvas, I just used cotton and then primed it a couple of times with Gesso. My husband then made a frame out of kauri timber for it. It was very satisfying to have made it all our selfs, but although it was fun to do it does require more time.

I prefer to use cotton duck canvas that is already stretched onto a frame as it is hard to get the time to make my own now so I just buy ready made. Heres a link that will give you loads more info on types of canvas .