What are the reasons why it is sometimes advantageous to paint on paper if in the end we want the painting to be on wood? It is what I’m talking about in this blog post.

A few weeks ago, I carried out experiments, mounting acrylic paintings made on different kind of on paper like Dura-Lar or rice paper on cradled wood panels. This time, it was the turn of a diptych in acrylic ink on Canson semitransparent tracing paper (18 lb – 30 gr). Why bother to paint on paper instead of doing it directly on the wood? It’s not a waste of time?

"Prendre l'air" (Get Some Fresh Air) 1 & 2 Diptych. Acrylic ink and tracing paper on cradled wood panels. 6 x 6 x1.5 in (15,24 x 15,24 x 3 cm). September 2016. © 2016, Louise Lamirande.

“Prendre l’air” (Get Some Fresh Air) 1 & 2
Diptych. Acrylic ink and tracing paper on cradled wood panels. 6 x 6 x1.5 in (15,24 x 15,24 x 3 cm).
September 2016.
© 2016, Louise Lamirande.

Here’s Why

It takes much less space. It does not even compare. Imagine the storage space required for a series of sheets of paper that can be stacked and sometimes even roll and then several cradled wood panels of the same size…

  • Less expensive. At equivalent size, the paper is almost always less expensive than cradled wood panel. For artists on a budget, it is to be considered. It’s always easier to let go and to be bold in painting when we know that there is not a large sum of money involved before we even start to paint. It’s also less heartbreaking to put aside an artwork that does not satisfy us. We have the possibility to glue on wood only our favorite paintings.
  • A unique surface. It is almost impossible to reproduce the particular characteristics of certain papers such as rock paper (TeraSkin), Yupo or Dura-Lar on wood unless we glue these papers on the wood.
  • Selection, cropping and recycling. When we paint in an intuitive way, it happens that the whole artwork is not of equal strength or simply that we prefer a part of the painting over another one. With painting on paper, it is fast and easy to crop the artwork and keep only the best part of it. Besides, the rejected part of the painting can often be recycled and used for collages or to add textures to the backgrounds of another artwork.
"Prendre l'air 1" (Get Some Fresh Air 1) Part 1 of a diptych. Acrylic ink and tracing paper on cradled wood panel. 6 x 6 x1.5 in (15,24 x 15,24 x 3 cm). September 2016. © 2016, Louise Lamirande.

“Prendre l’air 1” (Get Some Fresh Air 1)
Part 1 of a diptych.
Acrylic ink and tracing paper on cradled wood panel. 6 x 6 x1.5 in (15,24 x 15,24 x 3 cm).
September 2016.
© 2016, Louise Lamirande.

Concerning the Diptych

As mentioned earlier in this article, the paper mounted on wood this time was the semitransparent acid-free tracing paper from Canson (18 lbs – 30 gr). A very thin paper. I usually use it when I paint with acrylics to remove excess paint from my brushes, ink roller and other tools before cleaning them. Then, I recycle this paper in other paintings as collage or texture elements.

"Prendre l'air 2" (Get Some Fresh Air 1) Part 2 of a diptych. Acrylic ink and tracing paper on cradled wood panel. 6 x 6 x1.5 in (15,24 x 15,24 x 3 cm). September 2016. © 2016, Louise Lamirande.

“Prendre l’air 2” (Get Some Fresh Air 1)
Part 2 of a diptych.
Acrylic ink and tracing paper on cradled wood panel. 6 x 6 x1.5 in (15,24 x 15,24 x 3 cm).
September 2016.
© 2016, Louise Lamirande.

Before you ask me, this paper warps with acrylic inks, but according to the project, it’s not necessarily a problem. In the case of the diptych showed, I managed to stretch the paper when gluing it on wood so there are only a few tiny folds left, adding a little bit of texture to the painting. Not a problem at all, but for a bigger painting, it would be challenging.

Thanks you so much for your visit and see you soon,

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