Sunday 19 June 2011

Gesso and a Dry Brush Video

Well I'm back from Edinburgh, had a day's rest and feeling very enthused again…so enthused that I have made another video tutorial!
More on the video in a moment but first I wanted to share with you this abstract painting I am working on using the string technique.
Click Pictures For a Larger View
Andy-Skinner-Abstract (Small)

I found this technique using gesso and string on a website called Loving Mixed Media, it's really worth checking out if you like experimenting with mediums, lots of inspiration and great tutorials.
Ok on to the video, I loved the colours I used in the abstract above so decided to use them on this project using gesso as a textured background and dry brushing acrylic paint on top.
I have decorated a tag and an old perfume box pictured below.

andy bird2andy-bird4
For the tag I stippled the gesso on with a sponge dabber and the box I applied the gesso with a fan brush to give a different texture as you can see in these close-ups.

The secret to achieving this effect is the lighter you go the dryer your brush needs to be, finishing off with hardly any paint in the brush whatsoever.
Note; You will need an acrylic paint with a good pigment like Americana for this to work and if using cardstock a good flexible smooth gesso.
Right I will stop babbling on….here's the video, be warned some of the longer text instructions disappear a bit too quick so have your pause button ready!…PS please give it the thumbs up if you find it of use, it helps with the ratings….thanks!


  1. Brilliant technique, loving your stamps :)

  2. Love the abstract have you tried using no nails and acrylics over the top?

    Great technique with the gesso it is such a great bringer of texture. Only problem for me with the video was that some of the text frames moved to quickly and there was not enough time to read it all. Still got the general idea from watching your speeded up hands LOL thank you XOXO Zoe

  3. Thanks Zoe,
    I used to use polyfiller many moons ago but never tried no nails.
    I agree about the text moving a bit quick, I have put a warning on the video now telling people to be ready with their pause buttons lol

  4. Brilliant video Andy, I love the effect you got!

  5. Fab video and love the results. Your stamps are great too.

    Lesley Xx

  6. Super finishes on these projects. Loads of texture Andy !!

  7. My first visit to your site. I love your work and stamps. Will come back often. Thanks

  8. Fab technique video, & your stamps are brilliant too :)

  9. Andy, I love , love your videos!!! I just feel so inspired and not afraid to try some of your tricks and tips. I have always been some intimidated to try things on my own. You have absolutley boost my self esteem. Thank you so much.!! Andy I do have a question. On the video showing how to use alcohol inks by dipping in water, can yu give me some advice on how I can maybe use the inks on canvas? I have several small canvas's that I need to do something with. How can I incorporate the inks to make a abstract. Thanks for any info that you can share. Many hugs and you are my favorite teacher!!! Vicki

  10. Thanks Vicki,
    Alcohol inks work very well if you drop them into a very watered down mix of acrylic paint. If you look at the canvas above you will see brown alcohol ink used on that, also I use it on the Aboriginal video.


Your comments are always read and very much appreciated.