Canvas Paintings

by Neadeen Masters on April 9, 2012

The history of Canvas Paintings goes back hundreds of years!

Have you ever wondered where and how folks started to make canvas paintings? It’s a long story, and art historians have recorded it well, but it all started in Venice Italy. Since canvas is made out of fabric, canvas was first used to make the strong sail for the big merchant ships and other sea going vessels…Somewhere along the line; early Italian artists were inspired to use canvas as a surface to paint on. In its early use, canvas was very rough to paint on and had to me made smoother to accept the oil paint. That’s when ‘gesso’ was first invented. Gesso is a semi-liquid substance used to prepare the canvas prior to paint application. This made the canvas much more attractive as a smoother painting surface.  Modern gesso is still used today (commercially made of course) to help artists create an extra smooth surface if they so desire one. Because canvas was much easier to transport than wooden surfaces, its popularity soon spread across Europe and north to the Netherlands where it was gladly embraced by the Dutch Painters of that era.

Floral Painting By Susan Abdella - Art Apprentice Online Floral Painting By Susan Abdella – Art Apprentice Online

Canvas Painings and Oil Painting

Over the years many  have come to associate canvas paintings with oil painting. This is mostly because paintings hanging in the museums and modern art galleries are indeed oil paintings on canvas. Not only does this prove its durability, longevity and popularity among artists over time, it also suggests that no other painting surface seems to have outperformed its popularity.

Today artists have also embraced acrylic paint as a very popular and modern painting media. While straying from the traditional oil media, these acrylic artists have not strayed too far  from canvas. They too also readily embraced canvas as their surface of choice. Canvas, or ‘cotton duck’ as it is known, comes in many different weights and thicknesses. While many artists still stretch their own canvas onto sturdy wooden frames, commercial canvas supports can be purchased in art stores across the globe. This convenience makes it very easy for the new painter who is learning to paint, to have easy access to prepared surfaces and to embrace canvas paintings in the same way. Most of the students who take online art classes at the Art Apprentice Online will use canvas as their surface of choice. Join them as you learn to create your own canvas paintings to display in your own home or studio. New and student artists can be just as proud to showcase their first  canvas paintings as the professional artists who sells their art work in the local art galleries.

The result…canvas paintings live on…

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