Painting on Trees

24 Feb 2009

Q: I have been commissioned to paint sections of an oak tree that have been cut about 4” thick. The pieces vary in circumference, there is a bark layer around the outside of each piece, and the inside section of the wood has been sanded to a smooth finish. I will be painting with acrylic and would like to seal the wood before I paint. What would be a good surface sealant for this project?

Lascaux makes a wonderful gesso that will seal and protect the wood as well as the paint. It is very thick and should therefore be diluted 10% to 20% with water, and then at least two coats should be applied evenly. Be sure to allow two to three hours of drying time for each layer.

--by Camille LaPointe-Lyons

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