How to Make your own Gesso. The blog of Rachel Weaver, Artist and Designer.

How to Make Your Own Gesso

Why use Gesso?

Gesso acts as a primer and barrier, providing a tooth to trap pigment and also reducing absorption into your chosen work surface. Gesso can be applied thickly to create a textured surface, or thinned down and applied in multiple coats.

Use it to prime paper, cardboard, canvas, wood and more. Some canvases can be purchased pre-gessoed.

How to Make your own Gesso. The blog of Rachel Weaver, Artist and Designer.

You can buy white (and sometimes also black) pre-made gesso from your local art store - or save yourself some money and make your own by following the simple recipe below.

Materials

Approximately 1 cup of each, or equal parts -

  • Pigment - Acrylic Paint
  • Binder - White Glue (PVA)
  • Tooth - Talcum Powder or Calcium Carbonate (Whiting)
  • Warm Water

Method

  1. Pour the warm water in a suitable bowl.
  2. Add in the same quantity of talcum powder, mix thoroughly.
  3. Add in the same quantity of white glue, mix thoroughly.
  4. Finally, add in the same quantity of paint (usually white, but whatever colour you like) and mix together well.
  5. Transfer to an air tight container or jar, stir again before use.
  6. Can be made thicker or thinner depending on your preferences, add more pigment for more coverage.
  7. Can be applied in coats and sanded smooth, or leave thick and textured for added interest.

How to Make your own Gesso. The blog of Rachel Weaver, Artist and Designer.

How to Make your own Gesso. The blog of Rachel Weaver, Artist and Designer.

You can purchase Calcium Carbonate, or alternatively Casting Plaster, from Jackson's Drawing Supplies

Rachel Weaver

Rachel Weaver

Freelance Creative at studio 8T4
Aussie Freelancer with a love for Art, Graphic Design and Photography, who has been rocking a creative existence since 1984 - powered by puff pastry and the desire to teach, learn, encourage and connect with others.

Horror buff, animal lover, skull collector & long time Tomb Raider gamer.
Geraldton, Western Australia.
Rachel Weaver

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