Oil Painting – How to prepare a canvas

academy landschaftsmalerei 02 - Oil Painting - How to prepare a canvas

You have a great idea in your head, and you want to turn it into an oil painting?

We’ll show you how to do it professionally!

Before it comes to the actual process of painting, you have to pay attention to the choice and preparation of some very important things. We recommend you buy a canvas with a fine structure.

When you open a new canvas, you can sometimes find the canvas need tightening. To do so, insert the wedges, by hand, into the corner slots, and then, using a small hammer, knock the wedges upwards into the slots whilst supporting the canvas with your free hand. You should check again and again if the canvas is evenly tightened. Tap gently against the back of the canvas with your fingers. If the canvas sounds like a drum, then it’s ready to paint on.

The next step is the so-called “Imprimatura”. A very thin layer of diluted oil paint is applied to cover the background of the canvas. This achieves better color and artwork quality. Our teacher Ricky Larsson uses the color Raw Umber, which he evenly distributes with odorless turpentine substitute and kitchen paper. Now it just has to dry and then you can start painting!

Check out our video where our teacher Ricky Larsson prepares a canvas step by step!

We look forward to receiving your comments on your experience. Have fun and good luck with the oil painting!

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