“Peace” or How to flatten out a watercolor painting . A painting a day art lesson

 4 by 6 watercolor on paper $12.00 Special of the week.  5.0 S & H priority mail

We had a very nice Christmas dinner, (I cooked, call Ripley’s believe it or not). We didn’t even have to call the fire department!

I have been asked about my methods for flattening out watercolor paintings after they have dried. Its an easy process and I think the paintings are so much more appealing.

There are times when your have painted with a lot of water and your paper has buckled. This is easy to fix. I don’t usually tape down my paper especially for these small paintings. Often they don’t need flattening, but if they do, time is of the essence when you’re painting at least one painting a day. I’m like most folks and anything to save me a few minutes helps. Taping or stapling paper is just another chore, so I just don’t do it most of the time. If my paper becomes warped I flatten it back out with a press.

You don’t have to have a press you can just use two pieces of form-core
(or anything flat, like wood, or gator board), but since I’ve been asked about my press, I’ll show you how it works.
It can be made rather easily by putting a hinge on two pieces of wood. This one is specifically for small paintings since it only measures 11 by 14. Using piano hinges is also a good idea, this one has regular hinges.


You can see the bottom board is larger than the top board, both are plywood. The bottom board is marked off with tape where the painting should sit. The top is just plywood too, but to make sure the plywood doesn’t stain the painting, I’ve taped mat board to the top board.


You place some paper towels on the bottom piece of plywood, place your painting face down, moisten the back of the painting lightly, place more towels on top of the painting and close the top.press4.jpg


Here’s what mine looks like with the painting inside.
You usually have to put something heavy on top, my cat will do for now…. but most of the time I just use books
peace.jpgI hope you enjoyed this little explanation .
 Like this painting says…. PEACE

10 thoughts on ““Peace” or How to flatten out a watercolor painting . A painting a day art lesson

  1. Thanks for the hints on flattening a WC painting that’s taken on some unwanted dimension.
    Do you have short term rental rates on the cat. I have a few paintings that need flattening and should need him/her for more than a couple of days.

    Thanks again.

  2. About how long does it usually take? I mean, I’m sure it depends on a few things, but just in general. My friend and I are flattening some 11×15″ paper that curled pretty badly in the corners and I’m impatient and will hafta restrain my self from checking to see if it’s flat every 5 seconds

  3. Hi and this is great THANK YOU!.
    Can you give me an example of how “moist” you make the back, or maybe just your detailed approach to moistening the back?
    And how long do I leave the press?

  4. Hi and this is great THANK YOU!.
    Can you give me an example of how “moist” you make the back, or maybe just your detailed approach to moistening the back? (My fear is that the paper towels may stick to the moist back of the paper…)
    And how long do I leave the piece pressing?

  5. Thanks for the advice. My painting is a full sheet of paper, so I’ll have to improvise a press. I have a couple of heavy cats, but you know how it is with cats and teamwork!

  6. Thanks for the advice! How long do you leave the painting in the press? And if you wet the back of the painting, I’m afraid the moisture will make the wash on the front run. Has this ever happened? ( I’m using 140 lb paper).

  7. Dear All, We’re a Child and Youth focused non profit, we will be working with war affected Children, conducting a children’s painting competition on peace as we mark the Global Peace Day 21st September 2010. We’re looking for an open door of children painting material donations. For details on this event, visit our weblink below:-

    For any feedback, you can reach you by global.peaceday@aymu.org


  8. Pingback: Buy original abstract, surrealism oil paintings of Ukrainian artist Pisarev Gennagiy.

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