Painting with Watercolor on Claybord

Orchids on Claybord

Orchids on Claybord

If you are a watercolorist and want to try a new painting surface, Claybord might be just the thing for you.  I discovered Claybord a few years ago when I went to a workshop taught by my friend, nationally known artist Karen Vernon.

You may be wondering what Claybord is.  Claybord is a painting surface made of a thin coating of clay over a piece of masonite.  The surface has been fired.  Claybord was invented by Colorado artist, Charles Ewing.

Claybord is made by Ampersand Art Supply out of Austin, Texas.  The company makes claybord with different textures, such as aquabord, claybord, pastelbord, etc. You can go to their web site and check out all the different products.

I have used regular claybord, aquabord and the claybord box kits.  I have painted on the 1/8″ surface and also the 2″ deep cradle surface.

I enjoy using Claybord because the surface is very forgiving. You paint with an additive and subtractive manner.  If you make a mistake you can use a paintbrush or sponge to lift the paint off the surface.

Being able to lift can at times be a pain if you are used to doing glazes and layering your colors.  You have to be careful as you are putting color down. But just like painting on any new surface, it takes practice and a little getting used to.

A Claybord Box

A Claybord Box

To me the finished watercolor on claybord has a brilliance and vibrancy that you can’t get with paper.  A painting done on this surface does not need to be framed under glass which I think is a great benefit. I hate messing with glass.  Plus you don’t have to deal with the glass glare on your paintings. You varnish the painting and frame it like you would an oil painting.

So, if you are in the mood to give your creativity a new surface to play with, give claybord a try.  And by the way, I am writing about this product on my own, I am not being compensated in any way.

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7 Responses to Painting with Watercolor on Claybord

  1. Thanks Kris. I want to give my readers what they are interested in. So, if you have anything in particular you want me to write let me know.

  2. Hey Terry great post. I haven’t used Claybord before but would like to try. Like tomorrow. I mostly oil paint. How do you think it would be for me? I like this post so much I added claybord to my site. Thanks a bunch.
    .-= Gregg @ Oil Painting For Beginners´s last blog ..Claybord =-.

  3. Gregg, I think you absolutely should try. Go to this website by Ampersand. This link will take you to the page about claybord and oils.

  4. Ok Terry will do. I’m going to try it out. Thanks for the link.
    .-= Gregg @ Oil Painting For Beginners´s last blog ..Claybord =-.

  5. Lyn says:

    Do you have to coat the surface when finished? Seems like you would if it lifts so well.
    Your paintings are beautiful!

  6. Yes, Lyn. You do have to coat the claybord once you are finished. It needs a few coats of varnish. I spray with a clear UV-Resistant Acrylic Coating. Thank you for the compliment!

  7. Painting is so poetic, while sculpture is more logical and scientific and makes you worry about gravity. – Damien Hirst

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