Extra gesso on pre-primed canvas

It can be very beneficial to add an extra layer of coat to a pre-primed canvas or canvasboard.

Of course you can start painting right away on a pre-primed canvas. However: manufacturers naturally try to reduce production costs. Often the layers of gesso are diluted too much, or the gesso is unevenly applied. In some cases you even see greasestains on pre-primed canvasses.

Better safe than sorry

Applying gesso isn’t difficult and gesso isn’t that expensive. In this blog you can read how to use gesso.

Without an extra coat of your own gesso you have to put in more effort to make your paint ‘fill’ the canvas. That way you’re not really painting, you’ll be more concerned trying to fill the canvas.

Both amount of paint on brush. Left: pre-primed canvas. Right: pre-primed with extra layer of gesso.

With an extra layer of gesso you get a way better painting experience. The paint will flow more easily and you are in control.

So, in short these are the benefits of adding an extra layer of primer:

  • you have more control while painting
  • you save money because you need less acrylic paint
  • drying time increases, the paint will dry slower

But there’s another great benefit: when you are going to put an extra layer of gesso on your canvas, you might as well give it a color right away! Then you have a nice toned (or colored) ground. You can read more about that in this blog.

Categorised as blog