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Jayline1
01-23-2019, 01:18 PM
I have a roll of primed linen that has a very slick shiny surface. I have had trouble with oil paint adhering to it properly. I tried gesso which actually flaked off when paint was put on. I tried sanding which helped but still paint did not stick well. If you lightly scratch the surface of dried paint it will show pure white underneath. I also tried refreshing the surface with linseed oil after sanding. I'm not sure how the linen was primed. I do not have the original packaging anymore. Help!

Humbaba
01-23-2019, 01:39 PM
You probably purchased the wrong material. Linen is used for fine detail painting. Try to tone the canvas using a very fine mix of an earth color mixed with a tiny amount of varnish to help with adhesion, you then paint over this sticky surface.

Good luck

contumacious
01-23-2019, 02:07 PM
I have a roll of primed linen that has a very slick shiny surface. I have had trouble with oil paint adhering to it properly. I tried gesso which actually flaked off when paint was put on. I tried sanding which helped but still paint did not stick well. If you lightly scratch the surface of dried paint it will show pure white underneath. I also tried refreshing the surface with linseed oil after sanding. I'm not sure how the linen was primed. I do not have the original packaging anymore. Help!

How you go about making it more accepting of oil paint will depend on what the original surface is made of.

Try soaking and rubbing a small area of the ground that has not had anything done to it, with alcohol. If it softens it then it is most likely an acrylic ground, if it doesn't, then it is more likely an oil or alkyd ground.

What type of gesso did you apply on top? Was this after trying to paint directly on it with oils? If acrylic gesso didn't stick, then that would be an indicator that it is an oil / alkyd ground. There is also a chance that there is some kind of chemical on the surface that is preventing the gesso from bonding. Try cleaning a new piece if you have one with warm water followed by alcohol. Then test your paints / gesso again.

Jayline1
01-23-2019, 02:39 PM
Thank you Contumacious. I did try acrylic gesso over the linen first. That is what flaked off in big flakes. I have suspected it is an oil primed linen. So what does that mean in practical terms? I normally start a painting with a layer of gesso, then an all over wash of raw umber with 1/2 linseed & 1/2 Turpenoid. Then wipe out the light areas. Once dry I start painting. Is there something else I should be doing first.

Jacopo Robusti
01-23-2019, 04:00 PM
Oil primed linen is likely what you have and why the surface is shiny and water based gesso flaked off. I'm surprised when you applied it, it didn't resist and bead up.

Your only option is to forego the gesso and paint in oils only. Maybe lightly scuff up the surface with sandpaper if it is really shiny. You can use your wash mixture right on the primed oil ground, nothing else is needed. Just make sure there is no gesso or water based material left behind.

Jayline1
01-23-2019, 04:58 PM
Thank you Jacopo Robusti. I cut a piece of the linen & applied paint swatches with various mediums directly to the surface. Waiting for them to dry in a few days and see if the paint scratches off. I also read that you can refresh old oil primed linen with a thin coat of linseed oil. One more thing to experiment with. I appreciate the fast responses for my very frustrating problem. Thanks everyone.

Jacopo Robusti
01-23-2019, 05:22 PM
The reason the medium is shiny is due to linseed oil in the primer. I would not put more linseed oil on top of that. You will then be painting lean over fat, a real no-no. If you have to refresh it, scuff it up with sandpaper for some tooth and paint another layer of oil ground.

WFMartin
01-23-2019, 05:50 PM
I have a roll of primed linen that has a very slick shiny surface. I have had trouble with oil paint adhering to it properly.

There are some simple, straightforward ways to deal with that. Chances are that it is an oil-primed surface.

I tried gesso which actually flaked off when paint was put on.

That is a rather positive indication that it most likely is an oil-primed surface. NOT a good approach to apply acrylic primer to an oil-painted surface. That is a real "no-no". There are some who actually believe that to be a sound idea, but I am opposed to applying acrylic over oil paint, and your experience truly supports that premise.


I tried sanding which helped but still paint did not stick well.

Well, if you did all this sanding after having contaminated the oil-painted surface with acrylic primer, chances are the surface may be destroyed beyond recovery.


If you lightly scratch the surface of dried paint it will show pure white underneath.

What "dried paint"? I thought you were involved in priming the surface.

I also tried refreshing the surface with linseed oil after sanding. I'm not sure how the linen was primed. I do not have the original packaging anymore. Help!

Hopefully, you will use the information that you have gathered in this discussion to use more appropriate operations, with appropriate materials.

Be that as it may......I am guessing that your original, primed surface is oil paint, and if further application of oil paint does not adhere properly, there are quite simple ways to solve that, none of which involve re-priming (with ANY sort of paint or primer), nor sanding.

You may decide to pitch the one with which you are experiencing all this trouble, but you should have success with the remaining canvas on your roll.

Jacopo Robusti
01-23-2019, 08:37 PM
There are some simple, straightforward ways to deal with that.

..... there are quite simple ways to solve that, none of which involve re-priming (with ANY sort of paint or primer), nor sanding.

..ok, what are they?

Jayline1
01-24-2019, 09:51 AM
What "dried paint"? I thought you were involved in priming the surface.

All those experiments were tossed & I started an oil painting.


Be that as it may......I am guessing that your original, primed surface is oil paint, and if further application of oil paint does not adhere properly, there are quite simple ways to solve that, none of which involve re-priming (with ANY sort of paint or primer), nor sanding.

What simple ways are you suggesting?

WFMartin
02-01-2019, 06:47 PM
What "dried paint"? I thought you were involved in priming the surface.

All those experiments were tossed & I started an oil painting.


Be that as it may......I am guessing that your original, primed surface is oil paint, and if further application of oil paint does not adhere properly, there are quite simple ways to solve that, none of which involve re-priming (with ANY sort of paint or primer), nor sanding.

What simple ways are you suggesting?

Mix an oil painting medium composed of equal proportions of Linseed Oil, and Odorless Mineral Spirits. Rub that onto the surface with your fingertip, spreading it out into so thin a film that it does not appear "liquid", at all, but only a slight sheen, compared with the untreated areas. Glance a light across the surface, and view the treated area, to witness the "sheen". Then, merely apply normal paint into that applied medium.

If the medium that you apply tends to bead up on the slick surface, just rub some more. If the beading still occurs, mix up a medium that uses Oil of Spike Lavender as the solvent, instead of OMS. Oil of Spike is much more aggressive a solvent than OMS, and, as such, tends to "bite into" the surface of the dried underpaint. This "biting in" eliminates the surface tension that causes beading.

If that STILL gives you a problem (beading, pulling back, trickling, etc.) Add a bit of resin to the medium, such as Canada Balsam (my first choice), Venice Turpentine (my second choice), and Damar Varnish (not really my favorite).

Resin in the medium serves the primary purpose of eliminating beading, and promoting better adhesion of the fresh paint to the dried underpainted surface. These are my suggestions for eliminating the problems encountered with "slick-primed linen". There is no surface so "slick" that I can't counteract by using one of these methods.

Jayline1
03-13-2019, 03:55 PM
Thank you so much for your detailed solution to my problem. I appreciate your taking the time to answer.

Jayline1
03-13-2019, 04:03 PM
Thank you all for your help. I actually sent a sample of the canvas to Gamblin Paint Company & they verified that it is double oil primed linen. They said to wash it down with turpentine or mineral spirits & then apply a very thin layer of oil ground. I loved that their Product Specialist emailed me so quickly & sent detailed directions on how to carry out their suggestions. Just thought people should know how well this company treats their customers.