Category: Information

How to Balance Online and Offline Presence for Painters

In the contemporary art world, balancing an online and offline presence is much desired by painters who want to promote their artworks and art business effectively. Both spheres offer unique advantages that, when combined, can significantly enhance a painter’s visibility and success.

Online Presence: Expanding Reach

The internet has revolutionized how artists can reach their audience. An online presence allows painters to showcase their work to a global audience, transcending geographical limitations.

In a survey by Pew Research Center in 2013 of arts organization in the US, 81% of the organizations say the internet and digital technologies are “very important” for promoting the arts. Half of the respondents “strongly agree” with the statement that the internet “has increased engagement in the arts by providing a public platform through which more people can share their work.”

Platforms like Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, and TikTok are invaluable for visual artists, providing spaces where images reign supreme. Regularly posting high-quality photos of artworks, behind-the-scenes processes, and studio life can engage followers and attract potential buyers.

A personal website serves as a digital portfolio, offering a professional space to display artworks, share artist statements, and provide contact information. Utilizing SEO strategies can enhance a website’s visibility on search engines, making it easier for art enthusiasts to find the artist.

Online art marketplaces such as Etsy, Saatchi Art, and Artfinder allow painters to sell their works directly to consumers. These platforms often come with built-in audiences actively searching for unique pieces, providing a ready-made market.

Social media engagement is another critical component. Responding to comments, participating in art community discussions, and collaborating with other artists can foster a supportive network and increase an artist’s following. Live streaming and video content, such as tutorials or Q&A sessions, can also build a personal connection with the audience.

Offline Presence: Building Personal Connections

While the digital realm is essential, an offline presence remains equally important. Physical interactions provide opportunities for personal connections that can be more impactful and memorable than online interactions.

Art fairs, exhibitions, and gallery shows allow artists to display their work in a tangible form, offering viewers a chance to experience the texture, scale, and true colors of the paintings.

Networking events, artist talks, and workshops offer platforms for artists to share their stories, techniques, and inspirations in person. These interactions can lead to fruitful relationships with gallery owners, collectors, and fellow artists, fostering collaborations and support.

Local community involvement is also beneficial. Participating in local art walks, donating pieces for charity auctions, or collaborating on community art projects can build a painter’s reputation within their locality, creating a loyal local following.

Integration: The Best of Both Worlds

The key to effectively balancing online and offline presence lies in integration. An artist can use their online platforms to promote offline events, driving traffic to gallery shows or art fairs. They can capture moments from these offline events to share online, creating content that showcases their active involvement in the art community.

Cross-promotion between these two realms ensures a broader reach and a more dynamic presence. By maintaining an active and engaging online persona while also fostering personal, face-to-face connections, painters can build a robust and resilient art business, maximizing their exposure and opportunities for success.

10 Tips How Painters Can Attract Art Collectors

Getting artwork into the collections of art collectors and buyers can be a huge milestone for any painter. While the art world is competitive, there are several practical and doable strategies to increase the chances of success. Here are some tips:

1. Develop a Distinctive Style

Creating a distinctive and recognizable style is crucial. Art collectors often look for unique pieces that stand out. Spend time refining your technique and experimenting with different mediums and subjects to develop a signature style that is distinctly yours. Consistency in your work helps build a recognizable brand.

Read 6 Tips on How to Find Your Art Style to learn more.

2. Create a Strong Online Presence

Everyone has a computer and/or a smartphone nowadays. You must use technology to help you reach a wider audience.

Maintain an updated and professional website showcasing your portfolio, artist statement, and contact information. Use social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest to share your work and engage with a global audience. Regular posts, behind-the-scenes content, and engagement with followers can attract potential buyers and collectors.

3. Participate in Art Fairs and Exhibitions

Art fairs and exhibitions are excellent venues to showcase your work to a larger audience, including collectors and gallery owners. Participate in local and international art fairs, juried exhibitions, and open studio events. Networking at these events can lead to valuable connections and opportunities.

4. Collaborate with Galleries

Working with galleries can significantly boost your visibility. Research galleries that align with your style and approach them with a professional portfolio. Establishing a good relationship with gallery owners and curators can lead to exhibitions and inclusion in their collections, thus reaching a broader audience of collectors.

5. Network within the Art Community

Networking is crucial in the art world. Attend gallery openings, art lectures, workshops, and other art-related events. Build relationships with fellow artists, curators, collectors, and art critics. Personal recommendations and word-of-mouth can be powerful tools in gaining recognition and opportunities.

6. Create Limited Editions and Prints

Offering limited editions or prints of your work can attract collectors who may not be ready to invest in an original piece. This approach can broaden your market reach and provide a stepping stone for new collectors to become familiar with your work.

7. Engage with Art Critics and Bloggers

Getting your work reviewed by art critics or featured on art blogs can significantly increase your exposure. Reach out to critics and bloggers with a well-curated portfolio and press release. Positive reviews and features can attract the attention of collectors and galleries.

8. Offer Commissioned Work

Offering commissioned pieces can appeal to collectors looking for personalized art. Promote this service through your website and social media channels. Personalized art can create a deeper connection with buyers, leading to lasting relationships and future purchases.

9. Join Art Associations

Becoming a member of professional art associations can provide credibility and networking opportunities. Many associations offer resources, exhibition opportunities, and platforms to connect with collectors and other professionals in the art industry.

10. Continuous Learning and Adaptation

The art market is dynamic. Stay informed about market trends, pricing strategies, and emerging platforms for art sales. Continuous learning and adaptation can help you stay relevant and appealing to collectors.

Networking in person or online is important in showcasing your art and reaching more art lovers. By implementing these practical tips, painters can enhance their visibility and attractiveness to art collectors and buyers, paving the way for a successful career in the art world.

How to Prime a Canvas

Canvases come unprimed and pre-primed. Priming prepares the surface, ensuring better adhesion of the paint, a smoother finish, and increased longevity. Whether you’re a seasoned artist or a beginner, understanding how to prime your canvas properly is essential.

Here’s a guide to help you master the art of canvas priming.

Why Priming is Important

Priming your canvas serves several functions:

  • Improves adhesion. Primed surfaces allow the paint to stick better, preventing it from flaking or peeling over time.
  • Prevents absorption. Raw canvas can absorb paint, leading to wasted materials and uneven application. Priming creates a barrier, ensuring that the paint stays on the surface.
  • Enhances durability. A properly primed canvas is more resistant to environmental factors, such as humidity and temperature changes.
  • Provides a smoother surface. Priming fills in the weave of the canvas, offering a more even texture for painting.

Choosing the Right Primer

Acrylic gess is the most common primer used by artists. It’s water-based, quick-drying, and easy to apply. Acrylic gesso is versatile, suitable for both acrylic and oil paints.

Step-by-Step Guide to Priming Your Canvas

Materials Needed:

  • Raw canvas (pre-stretched or canvas roll)
  • Acrylic gesso
  • Wide, flat brush or foam roller
  • Sandpaper (optional)

Step 1: Prepare Your Workspace

Lay down protective coverings to prevent any spills or splatters. Ensure you have good ventilation.

Step 2: Stretch Your Canvas (If not pre-stretched)

If you’re using a canvas roll, stretch it over a frame and secure it tightly. This step is crucial for ensuring a smooth and even surface. Canvas stretching is a delicate balance between having a canvas that will not tear or sag later.

Custom-sized canvases

Step 3: Apply the First Coat of Primer

Using a wide, flat brush or foam roller, apply the first coat of gesso or primer. Start from the top and work your way downwards in long, even strokes. Ensure the primer is applied thinly and evenly to avoid drips and uneven texture.

Step 4: Let it Dry

Allow the first coat to dry completely. Acrylic gesso typically dries within 30 minutes to an hour.

Step 5: Sand the Surface (Optional)

For an extra smooth finish, lightly sand the surface with fine-grit sandpaper once the primer is dry. This step is optional but can be beneficial for detailed work.

Step 6: Apply Additional Coats

Turn your canvas 90 degrees so your strokes will be perpendicular to the direction of the first coating of primer. Apply a second coat of primer, following the same process. Two to three coats are usually sufficient, but you can add more if needed for a smoother surface.

Step 7: Final Drying

Allow the final coat to dry completely before starting your painting. Ensure the canvas is fully dry to prevent any issues with paint adhesion.

Practical Tips for Priming

  1. Stir the primer. Always stir your primer before use to ensure an even consistency.
  2. Use quality brushes. Invest in good-quality brushes or rollers to avoid loose bristles and achieve a smooth application.
  3. Work in a clean area. Ensure your workspace is free of dust and debris to prevent imperfections in the primer.
  4. Test the primer. If you’re unsure about the primer’s compatibility with your paint, test it on a small section of the canvas first.

Properly priming your canvas is a fundamental step that sets the foundation for your artwork. By taking the time to prepare your surface correctly, you can enhance the quality, durability, and overall appearance of your paintings.

Did You Know?

CanvasLot offers 100% cotton canvas and double primed with acid-free acrylic gesso ready to be painted on. Order online or call us today at 1-512-910-7333 (Austin, TX), Mon – Fri: 9am to 5pm (Central Time) and we’ll deliver your canvas right at your doorstep.

 

Essential Tips for Choosing the Right Paints and Brushes for Your Custom Canvas

Selecting the right paints and brushes for your custom canvas is crucial to achieving the desired outcome in your artwork. The right materials not only enhance your creative expression but also ensure the longevity and quality of your work.

Here are some essential tips to help you choose the perfect paints and brushes for your custom canvas.

1. Understand Your Medium

First, determine the type of paint you want to use: acrylic, oil, watercolor, or gouache. Each medium has unique characteristics:

  • Acrylics – versatile, quick-drying, and can be used on various surfaces. They are ideal for artists who enjoy layering and want fast results.
  • Oils – offer a rich, luminous finish and longer drying times, allowing for blending and detailed work. They require more preparation and drying time.
  • Watercolors – best for light, transparent layers and fluid, spontaneous techniques. They require specific watercolor paper or a specially prepared canvas.
  • Gouache – combines the opacity of acrylics with the fluidity of watercolors, suitable for vibrant and matte finishes.

2. Quality Over Quantity

Invest in high-quality paints. Professional-grade paints contain more pigment and less filler, resulting in richer colors and better coverage. While student-grade paints are cheaper, they may lack the vibrancy and longevity of professional-grade options. Start with a few essential colors and gradually expand your palette as needed.

3. Brush Types and Sizes

Choosing the right brushes is as important as selecting the right paints. Brushes come in various shapes and sizes, each suited for different techniques:

  • Round brushes – versatile, perfect for detailed work and fine lines.
  • Flat brushes – cover large areas and create sharp edges.
  • Filbert brushes – offer a combination of round and flat, ideal for blending and creating soft edges.
  • Fan brushes – great for creating textures and blending.

Choose brushes made from high-quality synthetic or natural fibers. Synthetic brushes work well with acrylics, while natural bristle brushes (hog bristle, sable and pony hair) are preferred for oils due to their durability and ability to hold more paint.

Photo by Szilvia Basso on Unsplash
Photo by Szilvia Basso on Unsplash

4. Consider the Canvas Texture

The texture of your custom canvas influences the choice of brushes. Smooth canvases are ideal for detailed work, requiring finer brushes. Rough or heavily textured canvases suit larger, more robust brushes that can hold more paint and cover the texture adequately.

5. Try Before You Buy

Whenever possible, test paints and brushes before purchasing. Many art supply stores offer samples or testing areas. Feel the brush in your hand, test its flexibility, and check the paint’s consistency and coverage on a small surface. This hands-on approach helps you make informed decisions and avoid disappointment.

6. Maintain Your Tools

Proper care extends the life of your paints and brushes. Clean brushes thoroughly after each use, using appropriate cleaners for the paint type. Store brushes upright or horizontally to maintain their shape. Seal paints properly to prevent drying out and store them in a cool, dry place.

Choosing the right paints and brushes is an integral part of your artistic process. By understanding your medium, investing in quality materials, and selecting the appropriate tools for your canvas, you can elevate your artwork and achieve your creative vision with confidence.

Prints on a table

7 Benefits of Selling Limited Editions

In the world of art, exclusivity often translates to desirability. Limited edition prints of paintings are a popular strategy for artists to enhance the appeal of their work, build a loyal collector base, and increase profitability.

Why should you sell limited editions? Here are seven reasons why:

1. Creating Exclusivity

One of the most significant advantages of offering limited editions is the sense of exclusivity it creates. When a collector knows that only a finite number of prints are available, it adds a unique value to the purchase. This exclusivity can drive demand, as buyers are motivated by the notion of owning something rare and special. The limited availability can turn each piece into a coveted item, enhancing its appeal to collectors and enthusiasts.

2. Increasing Perceived Value

Limited editions often command higher prices than open editions due to their rarity. This scarcity can increase the perceived value of the artwork. Collectors are generally willing to pay a premium for limited edition prints because they understand that these pieces are not mass-produced.

By keeping the editions small, artists can maintain a higher price point, which not only benefits their bottom line but also reinforces the perception of the artwork as a high-value item.

American painter Chuck Close, renowned for his large-scale portraits, ventured into limited editions. Close’s limited edition prints often replicate his meticulous style and intricate details, making his art more accessible to collectors. These editions are typically produced in collaboration with master printmakers, ensuring high quality and fidelity to the originals.

3. Building a Collector Base

Limited editions can help artists build a loyal collector base. When buyers purchase a limited edition, they become part of an exclusive group of collectors. This sense of belonging can foster loyalty, encouraging repeat purchases and long-term support for the artist’s work.

Banksy, the elusive street artist, is famous for his limited edition prints. These prints are highly sought after and often sell out quickly, increasing their value over time. His limited editions allow a broader audience to own a piece of his art, which would otherwise be unattainable due to the high prices of his originals.

4. Enhancing Marketability

Offering limited editions can also enhance the marketability of an artist’s work. Limited editions can be promoted as special, collectible items, making them more attractive to potential buyers. Artists can leverage this marketing angle in their promotional efforts, highlighting the uniqueness and limited nature of the prints.

This approach can be particularly effective in online marketing campaigns, gallery exhibitions, and art fairs, where standing out is crucial.

5. Generating Buzz and Urgency

The limited nature of the editions can create a sense of urgency among potential buyers. Knowing that there are only a few pieces available can prompt quicker purchasing decisions, as collectors may fear missing out on the opportunity.

This urgency can lead to faster sales and can also generate buzz around the artist’s work. Word-of-mouth and social media can amplify this effect, drawing more attention to the limited editions and, by extension, to the artist’s entire portfolio.

6. Providing Financial Stability

For many artists, the financial aspect of selling art is a significant consideration. Limited editions can provide a more stable and predictable revenue stream compared to selling original paintings alone.

Since prints can be sold at a lower price point than originals, they are more accessible to a broader audience, increasing the potential for sales. Also, the ability to produce multiple prints from a single artwork allows artists to maximize the revenue potential of each piece.

Takashi Murakami, a Japanese contemporary artist known for his colorful and whimsical style, offers limited edition prints. His limited editions often feature his signature characters and vibrant designs, making them highly desirable to collectors worldwide.

7. Offering Flexibility and Experimentation

Limited editions offer artists the flexibility to experiment with different formats, sizes, and mediums. Artists can explore various printing techniques and materials, adding unique touches to each edition. This experimentation can lead to innovative and distinctive works that appeal to different segments of the market, further expanding the artist’s reach.

Overcoming Limited Exposure as an Artist: Practical Tips for Gaining Visibility

For many artists, one of the most frustrating challenges is limited exposure. Despite pouring passion and effort into their work, many talented individuals struggle to get their art seen by a wider audience. This lack of visibility can be discouraging, but there are effective strategies to overcome this hurdle.

Here are some practical tips to help you increase your exposure and get your art noticed:

1. Leverage Social Media

  • Choose the right platforms.

Instagram: A visual-centric platform ideal for sharing artwork. Use high-quality images, engaging captions, and relevant hashtags to reach a broader audience.

Pinterest: Another great platform for visual content. Create boards showcasing your art and join group boards to increase visibility.

Facebook: Create an artist page to share your work, updates, and events. Engage with art groups and participate in discussions to network with other artists and potential buyers.

  • Consistency is key. Post regularly to keep your audience engaged. Create a content calendar to plan your posts and maintain a steady flow of content.
  • Engage with your audience. Respond to comments and messages. Building a relationship with your followers can turn them into loyal supporters who share your work with others.

2. Build a Professional Website

  • Showcase your portfolio. A professional website serves as a portfolio where potential clients and galleries can view your work. Include high-quality images, detailed descriptions, and prices.
  • Blog about your art. Write about your creative process, inspiration, and upcoming projects. Blogging can attract visitors through search engines and give them deeper insights into your work.
  • Optimize for SEO. Use relevant keywords in your website content to improve search engine rankings. This makes it easier for people to find your site when searching for art online. Here are sample keywords to use: Abstract canvas wall art, Christmas canvas wall art, Concept art.

3. Participate in Art Exhibitions and Fairs

  • Local galleries and art fairs. Participate in local art shows and fairs. These events are excellent opportunities to showcase your work, meet other artists, and connect with art lovers and buyers.
  • Online art competitions. Many organizations host online art competitions. Participating in these can increase your visibility and, if you win, provide accolades that enhance your credibility.
  • Collaborate with other artists. Team up with other artists for joint exhibitions or projects. Collaboration can introduce your work to a new audience and create exciting new opportunities.

4. Network and Connect

  • Join art communities. Become an active member of online and offline art communities. Engage in discussions, share your work, and offer constructive feedback to others.
  • Attend art events. Go to gallery openings, workshops, and art lectures. Networking at these events can lead to valuable connections with gallery owners, curators, and fellow artists.
  • Seek mentorship. Find a mentor who can offer guidance, support, and connections in the art world. Mentors can provide valuable insights and help navigate the challenges of gaining exposure.

5. Utilize Art Marketplaces

  • Online art platforms. Platforms like Etsy, Saatchi Art, and Artfinder allow you to sell your work to a global audience. Ensure your listings are well-crafted with clear images and descriptions.
  • Print-on-demand services. Services like Redbubble and Society6 let you sell prints and merchandise featuring your art. This can provide additional income and exposure.

6. Create and Share Content

  • Video content. Create videos of your painting process and share them on YouTube or TikTok. Video content can reach a wide audience and provide a personal connection to your work.
  • Offer workshops and tutorials. Host online workshops or create tutorial videos. Teaching others not only showcases your expertise but also builds a community around your work.
  • Email marketing. Build an email list and send regular newsletters with updates about your latest works, upcoming exhibitions, and special offers. Email marketing keeps your audience informed and engaged.

Gaining exposure as an artist requires persistence and a multifaceted approach. By leveraging social media, building a professional online presence, participating in exhibitions, networking, utilizing online marketplaces, and creating engaging content, you can increase your visibility and reach a wider audience.

Stay patient and proactive, and over time, your efforts will pay off with increased recognition and opportunities for your art.

Exploring the Canvases of Famous Artists

Artists throughout history have utilized various mediums and canvases to express their creativity and leave a mark on the world of art. From Renaissance masters to modern visionaries, each artist brought their unique style and technique to their chosen canvas.

Leonardo da Vinci. Mona Lisa. 1503. Louvre Museum.
Leonardo da Vinci. Mona Lisa. 1503. Louvre Museum.

Leonardo da Vinci

The epitome of the Renaissance man, Leonardo da Vinci, is celebrated for his mastery in multiple disciplines, including painting. While he experimented with different surfaces, Leonardo often favored wood panels coated with gesso for his iconic works like the Mona Lisa and The Last Supper. His meticulous attention to detail extended to the preparation of his canvases, ensuring a smooth and durable surface for his brushstrokes.

Da Vinci was incredibly particular about the quality of his materials. He used oil paint that he made by hand from ground pigments and he often sourced the finest wood and gesso for his paintings. His commitment to perfectionism is evident in the timeless beauty and precision of his artworks.

La Nuit étoilée. Vincent van Gogh. 1889. Oil on canvas, 73 × 92 cm (28.7 × 36.2 in). Museum of Modern Art (New York City)

Vincent van Gogh

Vincent van Gogh revolutionized the art world with his bold use of color and expressive brushwork. He preferred heavy, textured canvases that allowed him to apply thick layers of paint in his distinctive impasto style. He also experimented with unprimed surfaces such as hessian, a coarse fabric made from hemp or jute. His masterpieces, such as Starry Nigh” and Sunflowers, are renowned for their dynamic energy and emotional intensity.

The tormented genius is known for his dedication to his craft, painting for hours without rest. Despite his struggles with mental illness and personal hardships, he poured his heart and soul into his canvases, leaving behind a legacy that continues to inspire artists and art enthusiasts worldwide.

Studio with Plaster Head. Pablo Picasso. 1925. Oil on canvas. 38 5/8 x 51 5/8" (97.9 x 131.1 cm).
Studio with Plaster Head. Pablo Picasso. 1925. Oil on canvas. 38 5/8 x 51 5/8″ (97.9 x 131.1 cm).

Pablo Picasso

Pablo Picasso knew no bounds–he fearlessly pushed the boundaries of art and creativity. He experimented with various mediums and techniques throughout his career. He painted on linen canvas, plywood and wood panel. From his early Blue and Rose Periods to his later Cubist explorations, Picasso’s versatility and innovation are evident in every brushstroke.

Georgia O’Keeffe

The pioneering spirit of Georgia O’Keeffe revolutionized the world of modern art with her bold, abstract depictions of flowers and landscapes. O’Keeffe often worked on large-scale canvases, allowing her to explore the intricate details of her subjects with precision and clarity. Her iconic paintings, such as Jimson Weed and Black Iris, capture the essence of the American Southwest with a timeless elegance.

O’Keeffe has a deep connection to nature as evident by her bodies of work. She finds inspiration in the vast landscapes and rugged beauty of the desert. Her artistic vision transcended mere representation, offering viewers a glimpse into the soul of the natural world through her canvases.

The canvases chosen by famous artists played a crucial role in shaping their artistic vision and legacy. Whether it was Leonardo da Vinci’s meticulous wood panels or Jackson Pollock’s unconventional floor canvases, each surface became a blank canvas for artistic expression and innovation.

Get Your Painting Canvas from CanvasLot

CanvasLot specializes in custom-size canvases for painting. We offer hand-stretched, gallery-wrapped canvases from 6 inches up to 12 ft. Ordering can be done online and we’ll deliver your canvas right at your doorstep.

 

Painter's palette

Which is the Best Canvas for Acrylic Painting?

Selecting the perfect canvas for your acrylic masterpiece can be likened to choosing the ideal brushstroke—each decision shapes the final outcome. With a lot of options available, from stretched to unprimed, finding the best quality canvas can feel like navigating a labyrinth of artistic choices.

To help you choose the best canvas for your acrylic painting, here are three factors to consider:

Fabric. Painting canvases are commonly made from two materials–linen and cotton. Artists agree that linen canvas is the better canvas compared to cotton because of its durability and archival quality.

Cotton, on the other hand, provides a softer and smoother surface than linen. It’s also more accessible and budget-friendly. All of CanvasLot’s canvases are made from 100% cotton.

To know more about the difference between a linen and cotton canvas, read the article: Painting on Linen vs Cotton Canvas

Prime or Umprimed. Priming a canvas gives you a smooth surface to paint on and helps prevent it from rotting. Most canvases are pre-primed with gesso to save you time and effort.  Acrylic paint adheres better on a primed canvas and the paint will not sink into the canvas. All of CanvasLot’s canvas surfaces are double primed with acid-free acrylic gesso ready to be painted on.

If you enjoy preparing your canvas from scratch, you can choose an unprimed canvas and apply gesso yourself.

Custom-sized canvases from CanvasLot
Custom-sized canvases from CanvasLot

Types of Canvases. There are several types of canvases available in the market, each catering to different skill level, painting style, budget and desired outcome.

  • Stretched canvas – A stretched canvas is one of the most popular types of canvas for acrylic painting. The fabric (either linen or cotton) is stretched over and stapled on a wooden frame called stretcher bars.
  • Canvas panels – A more affordable alternative to stretched canvas, canvas panels are usually made from cotton that is mounted onto a rigid board. It is thinner, more portable and is a good choice for beginners.
  • Canvas papers – These are sheets of primed canvas that are bound together as a pad or book. Another budget-friendly option that’s ideal for students and novice artists.
  • Canvas rolls – A canvas roll is usually used used when creating large paintings. It is made from linen or cotton and comes in different weights, textures and fibers. You can get it primed or unprimed. Sold by yard, canvas rolls are on the expensive side of canvases. This option is ideal for an experienced painter.

In conclusion, the best canvas for acrylic painting depends on your personal preferences, skill level and budget. Whether you prefer the convenience of pre-primed canvases or the tactile allure of unprimed linen, selecting the perfect canvas is an important step in bringing your artistic vision to life.

Want to know more about canvases for painting? Contact us and we’ll gladly answer your questions.

Landscape of the Moon's First Quarter, 1943 by Paul Nash (d. 1946)

Caring for your Artwork: 5 Simple Ways

Having an artwork is an investment both emotionally and financially. Whether you’re the painter or the art collector, making sure that your painting is in pristine condition should never be a difficult task.

Here are five simple ways on how to care, clean and store your artwork:

Dust regularly. Keep your paintings in tip-top shape by dusting them regularly. If the painting is on a wall, bring it down first and place it on the floor against a wall at an angle before dusting.

Use a soft, clean brush or a microfiber cloth to gently sweep away dust and dirt. Think of yourself as a painting detective, revealing the true beauty hidden beneath the grime! Avoid feather dusters since its fibers could latch on the canvas and edges of the paint itself.

Photo by Joseph Morris on Unsplash
Photo by Joseph Morris on Unsplash

Avoid direct sunlight. Sunlight—the painter’s best friend and worst enemy! While natural light can enhance the beauty of your artwork, prolonged exposure can cause colors to fade and canvas to deteriorate faster than last week’s leftovers.

Keep your paintings out of direct sunlight or consider using UV-filtering glass to protect them. It’s like giving your masterpiece its own pair of sunglasses!

Check the temperature and humidity. Whether you’re hanging or storing your painting, it’s important to pay attention to the room’s temperature and humidity. Avoid extreme heat and cold temperatures since these will damage your artwork.

According to art experts, between 21-24 degree Celsius is the optimal temperature to keep paintings. Be mindful of ceiling lights which can deteriorate your painting in the long run. Also, keep your paintings away from air conditioning units, radiators, fireplaces, and air vents.

Store properly.  When it’s time to tuck your paintings away for a little rest, give them the VIP treatment! Store them vertically in a cool, dry place away from damp basements and hot attics.

If you’re stacking them, make sure to place protective sheets between each painting to prevent scratches and smudges. The front of the canvas should be stacked against the front–and not the back, of another canvas. Make sure that the stretcher bars rest over stretcher bars so there are no sharp edges (corners) pushing into the canvas of another painting.

Tip: Put paintings on crates or other stable platform to prevent the them from touching the ground that exposes them to dirt. And, if you live in a flood-prone area, these crates will keep your paintings safe and dry.

Packed canvases
Packed canvases

Handle with care. Always handle your painting with care. Hold the artwork by the frame or edges and prevent touching the surface of the painting. The oil in your fingertips  can damage the artwork.

Always have acid-free paper, bubble wrap, corner protectors, foam cushions, etc. on hand. These inexpensive items will protect your painting while in storage, and during moving or shipping.

Want to learn more about how to ship your painting? Check out How to Pack and Ship Canvas Art for more!

Keep in mind these simple tips so you can enjoy your painting for many years to come.

Remember, happy paintings make for happy art lovers!

If you’re looking for high-quality canvases, contact us! Whether you want a custom-sized or standard size canvas, our staff is ready to help you.

Featured image: Birmingham Museums Trust

How to Pack and Ship Canvas Art

Packing and shipping framed canvas art requires careful attention to ensure the artwork arrives at its destination safely and in pristine condition. Here’s a step-by-step guide to pack and ship framed canvas art:

1. Gather materials. Before you begin, gather all the necessary materials. You’ll need a sturdy cardboard box slightly larger than the artwork, acid-free paper, bubble wrap, air cushions, packing paper, packing tape, cardboard corner protectors, and a marker for labeling.
2. Wrap the artwork. This step has many layers. Take your time during this step.

  • Make sure that the frame is secure and there are no loose piece (hanging hardware, wires, etc.) that could damage the art during shipping.
  • Use acid-free paper to wrap the artwork. This will protect the piece from marks and indentations that could damage it.
  • Tightly wrap the artwork in cling film. Start from the back of the frame and wrap the cling film around the artwork several times.
  • Wrap the framed canvas art in several layers of bubble wrap. Take note that the bubbles should be facing away from the surface of the painting. Ensure that the entire surface of the artwork is covered, paying extra attention to the corners and edges, which are vulnerable to damage during transit. Secure the bubble wrap in place with packing tape.

Tip: When packing a very large framed artwork, it’s better to remove the glazing since there’s a greater risk of the glass breaking during transit. Put a clean sheet of cardboard on the painting to protect it.

Packed canvases for shipping
Packed canvases for shipping

3. Protect the corners. Place cardboard corner protectors over the corners of the framed canvas to provide additional reinforcement and protection against impacts.

4. Prepare the box. Line the bottom of the cardboard box with a layer of packing paper or bubble wrap to cushion the artwork. If shipping multiple pieces, separate them with additional layers of packing material to prevent them from rubbing against each other.

5. Position the artwork in the box. Carefully place the wrapped and protected framed canvas art in the center of the box, ensuring that it is positioned upright and does not touch the sides of the box. Fill any empty spaces with additional packing material, such as bubble wrap or packing peanuts, to prevent shifting during transit.

Tip: Make sure that you’ve filled the box with air cushions and/or insulation foam so the artwork doesn’t move at the center of the box.

6. Seal the box. Once the artwork is securely positioned in the box, seal the box with packing tape. Reinforce the seams and edges of the box to prevent it from opening during shipping.

7. Label the box. Use “Fragile” and “Handle with Care” stickers all around the shipping box. Include the sender’s and recipient’s addresses, as well as any special instructions for the carrier.

8. Choose a shipping method. Select a reputable shipping carrier that offers insurance and tracking services for valuable items. Consider opting for expedited shipping or additional insurance coverage for added peace of mind.

9. Schedule pickup or drop-off. Arrange for the packaged artwork to be picked up by the shipping carrier or drop it off at a designated shipping location. Be sure to obtain a receipt or tracking number as proof of shipment.

10. Monitor shipment. Keep track of the shipment’s progress using the provided tracking number. Notify the recipient once the artwork has been successfully delivered.

Packing a canvas art may take so much of your time, but it will give you and your client peace of mind. Also, remember that the time spent packing your artwork is a fraction of the time you spent creating it.