Thick as Plaster

Because these paintings needn’t be removed from the panels I’ve poured gesso over the canvas to a depth of about an eighth of an inch, squeegee-ing it with a piece of left-over masonite to smooth it out. Later I’ll get Joe to sand this down thoroughly to a really nice smooth surface that will be a delight to paint on. I shot the photo using a raking light over the surface to show the thickness of the gesso, so the texture is a little exaggerated.

I’m really looking forward to painting on this, because it’s been a very long time since I was able to do it. The painting experience is even more delightful; the panel surface becomes like glass, and the brush glides over it. The reason I do this is because I dislike the bounce of canvas, preferring wood as a substrate, but I worry about wood because it cracks and warps when the weather changes.

About pearce

Michael Pearce is an artist, writer, and professor of art. He is the author of "Art in the Age of Emergence."
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