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Friday, March 16, 2012

Top Ten Reasons for Painting on Ampersand Panels

In today’s art supply market, artists have a plethora of surfaces to choose from to create their work. We’d like to share some information regarding the advantages of painting on not just a rigid panel, but the true advantages of painting on an Ampersand panel that has been well prepared. 

  1. Well-prepared rigid panels are the best support for an artwork -- It is difficult, over time, for a stretched canvas to support thick layers of oil colors, acrylic paints or alkyds without resulting in cracking of the paint film. Stretched canvas is also much more susceptible to atmospheric changes in moisture and temperature – again affecting the stability of the artwork over time. Rigid substrates, on the other hand, can support heavy bodied paints and thick layers without cracking. Paintings on prepared wood panels from the 3rd and 4th centuries are still in tact without cracking of the paint film

  2. Archiva-Seal™ barrier technology protects your art -- All wood panels should be sealed before applying the painting ground and before painting on the surface. Have you ever used a pure white gesso ground directly on wood only to discover that it looks yellow or marbled? Not with Ampersand's acid-free surfaces. Ampersand’s hardboard supports are first properly sealed with Archiva-Seal™. Ampersand uses this unique patented barrier technology to seal the hardboard preventing any support-induced discoloration and any separation of the painting ground from the panel. 

  3. Acid-free surfaces from top to bottom -- Every single ground Ampersand uses is acid-free and long lasting, from the smooth absorbent clay ground of Claybord™ to the bright acrylic gesso ground of Gessobord™.

  4. High-density hardboard engineered for stability -- All of Ampersand’s Museum Series panels are made with premium US made hardboard that has a high-density fiber core engineered for maximum dimensional stability. Ampersand’s hardboard outperforms MDF and raw wood panels when it comes to eliminating panel warping and bowing.
  5. Museum Series Sampler

  6. Easy to frame or not to frame -- There is no need to frame the cradled panels as they are ready to hang as soon as the painting is complete. Only Ampersand cradle support frames are handcrafted with 13-ply stable Birch plywood that can be painted, stained, waxed or left unfinished. Ampersand offers up a few hanging tips and cradle treatments here: Hanging Tips

  7. Choose from a variety of finishes without having to seal and prime -- Claybord™, Encausticbord™, Pastelbord™, Gessobord™, Scratchbord™ and Aquabord™ are all ready to use right away without the need to seal, prime and gesso the panel. And, if you want to prepare your own special ground, you can use Hardbord™.

  8. Many popular standard sizes and profiles -- Ampersand has a wealth of sizes and cradle profiles, choose from over 500 configurations. Download a pdf of the complete list here:  Sizes and Profiles

  9. Panels can support any paint medium -- Any medium can be applied to one of Ampersand's panels:  pastel, charcoal, acrylic, oil, watercolor, gouache, alkyd, casein, ink, oil pastel, oil bar, encaustic, egg tempera and more. For tips on which panel might be right for you, here’s a panel comparison chart:  Panel Comparison Chart

  10. Made from FSC certified sustainable US forest products -- Using wood panels can be daunting, knowing that trees are processed to make them, however, Ampersand takes the environment seriously and although more expensive, they choose FSC certified wood products from US forests that are renewable and sustainable. FSC certification is the most effective environmental standard for the protection of wildlife, soil and water quality. Ampersand hardboard is also manufactured using a completely green process: no harmful chemicals used, no hazardous waste and no gas emissions for the end consumer—and completely formaldehyde-free.

  11. Made in the USA — Ampersand official headquarters is located in Austin, Texas providing manufacturing jobs in their community and the highest quality products for artists nationwide.

    ~Karyn

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