Creating Artwork on Wood Panels

I've been taking painting classes for a while and really enjoy it, but I'd like to experiment with different methods and materials. I'd like to try painting on wood panels. I generally use oil paints with walnut or linseed oil for glazes.


Does anyone know what kind of wood one traditionally uses for this? Or if there are any special priming techniques? Can you still use acrylic gesso to prime wood panels, or is there a special gesso that works better?

By Christy from Asheville, NC

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June 6, 20100 found this helpful

When I was an art minor in college, back in the 60s, our art instructor urged us to use the back side of masonite, instead of canvas. She said it was cheaper and a good source for students. She told us to go to the lumber yard and ask if they had any scrap pieces of masonite. If you live in a small enough town you could probably go to your lumber yard and see what you could get along that line.


The college town that I lived in had a population of about 5,000 and the guys in the lumber yard would come out with an armfull of different sizes of scrap masonite, and not charge me anything. I have seen paintings done on what is called barn siding, and I have always been under the impression that it is done on old pieces of barn siding from barns that have been torn down. I would think any type of wood would work. Why don't you ask your instructor.

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