The first time I used something similar to claybord was when I was 17 in high school. I had received my first real commission- to draw a portrait of a teacher's baby. I had spent hours working on the baby's face, drawing on a simple piece of sketchbook paper. After making a couple mistakes and erasing them, the paper wore down and I ripped the drawing! I was so frustrated. Then my art teacher gave me a piece of what he called "illustration board". It was a soft silky surface that was also very sturdy, giving my eraser zero chance of destroying my drawing. I have been in love with creating art on smooth surfaces ever since.
The only problem- is that when it came to art school, the need for inexpensive materials was a must- and soft surfaces like illustration board/claybord was not cheap. So I went back to canvases. I embraced how they treats my wallet, but seriously despised the way they sucked up my expensive paints and their obnoxious texture.
It wasn't until I was out of college that I was able to afford painting on claybord about 75% of the time. I learned how to build my own cradles, so that i could save money by only having to purchase the claybord itself. Sometimes I luck out in craft stores like Ben Franklin or Michaels and find similar surfaces called "artist boards" but my favorite is still the official claybord which you can find by clicking here. The surface is sanded to be ultra smooth and let's the tiniest amount of paint burst with color on the panel. You end up using less paint than with a canvas because it's just not necessary. It's great for ink too. In the above image, you can see the rough texture of the canvas and how none of the lines are straight because the canvas won't allow you to have complete control. In the painting below- created on claybord- I knew where each stroke of paint was going, and the paint took longer to dry, giving me more time to move it wherever I wanted.
So my conclusion is- if you're an illustrator, a painter or even a mixed media artist and you haven't tried Ampersands claybord yet- pleeeeease try them. They might seem pricey, but if you click here the panels are up to 40% off and you'll save money on your materials because they spread soooo smoothly on this ideal surface!
What is your favorite surface to paint or draw on? Comment below!
Hi friends! Welcome to the blog! I'm Mandy and I'm an artist, blogger & founder of the "Artists to Know" interview series. Here you'll find photos of my latest art adventures, furniture makeover projects & advice from successful artists!
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