Which canvas should I use? [Archive] - Artist Forum

: Which canvas should I use?

12-12-2017, 12:23 PM
I'm not sure which canvas to use for the tropical waterfall picture below. I'm trying to decide between the Fredrix oil primed linen canvas (double-primed) and the Paris oil primed linen canvas which is triple-primed. Both are said to produce good results with oil paint but I'm not sure which one to use. The Paris oil primed linen canvas is described as having a surface conducive for a luminous effect and I'm wondering would this be the ideal canvas for the luminous colors of the attached picture. The picture has light shining through a leaf in the picture and vivid streams of light reflecting in the water and I'm wondering if the Paris oil primed linen canvas would be the best one to use considering it's luminous surface. The Fredrix oil primed canvas is said to be ideal for smooth blending. Both seem to be ideal canvases. I just don't know which one is the best for this picture. Please comment.

12-12-2017, 01:09 PM
Good luck on your quest for the perfect canvas. I haven't begun to consider such things. I just grab whatever they have at the craft store. I'm heading towards more realism as I learn more so one day I may be asking similar questions. That's over my head right now.

M Winther
12-14-2017, 01:37 PM
"Smooth blending" should be able to be achieve, anyway. A luminous effect sounds more interesting. Oil paint has the backside (or the advantage) that it cannot easily create those luminous effects deriving from the light background. Instead it looks a little dull and old (which is also very attractive).

Luminous effects are much easier to create with acrylics. Acrylics paintings can really shine with an inner light, and therefore appear more modern, in my view. Mistakes are much easier to correct. I disagree with those oil painters who disparage acrylics.

12-23-2017, 02:21 PM
Both should be fine. The luminous quality you are looking for should come from painting technique rather than the canvas. It comes down to what you prefer. Do you like smooth or rough surfaces? Do you want the canvas to assist in drying or no?
Since they are both oil-primed, they won't be as different as say gesso primed vs. oil primed, but there will be differences.

Try them out and see which one you like :)

Traffic NYC
12-26-2017, 01:45 AM
I suggest you for using pure cotton canvas for the tropical waterfall picture.

03-18-2018, 09:46 AM
An oil-primed canvas or linen will result in a more opaque, less porous surface which will allow the paint to sit on the surface and not sink in to get dull as with acrylic-primed products. However, if you add a couple of layers of acrylic gesso to an acrylic-primed canvas it will help to solve this problem. or prime an acrylic-primed canvas with a layer or two of oil primer. Or use a hardwood board suitable sized and primed. The Paris canvas uses a glue size (probably rabbit-skin glue) which is not advised because--aside from the needless harm to bunny rabbits--glue sizes are prone to cracking, whereas modern PVA-type sizes are not.

However, your technique is more important than your support--you can use glazes with transparent colors to achieve luminosity or oil out once the finished painting has dried and then apply a gloss varnish.