View Full Version : Removing paint from canvas

09-18-2009, 02:28 PM
Happy Friday everyone! Quick question, how do you remove paint from a canvas? I finished up my first oil painting about an hour ago, but I over-did one small area of the painting. I'd like to remove the paint completely from this area, and paint over it again. I started to use a palette knife to remove paint, and also began to try and wipe with a paper towel, but I'm starting to spread some of the paint instead of removing it - thanks!

09-18-2009, 02:45 PM
If the paint is still wet enough, you can carefully apply some water with a brush and then blot with paper towel. That might work. If it is already dry (or too dry for the above to work) then you can always paint over.

Good luck!



09-18-2009, 02:50 PM
Hi Dee - thanks for your reply. It's still pretty wet.....I'm wetting a paper towell and trying to wipe/blot it off, and it's kind of working.....tough to wipe it away b/c I keep picking up a bit of paint and spreading it across! May simply paint over it like you said!

09-18-2009, 06:08 PM
You might try a damp brush. No lint or paper bits. Just keep a clean towel close and have patience (I do a lot of scrubbing out on my paintings - always something wrong). Wipe up a bit with the brush, rinse, use the towel to blot the brush (should be damp, not wet), then wipe off some more. I usually soften/blend the edges of the area I've "erased", so there wont be a hard line or edge showing through when it's painted over.
Good Luck!


09-19-2009, 05:28 PM
I use a little two-headed rubber scraper with a slanted, chisel edge on one end and a pointed edge on the other. It's really easy to control the area you want to scrape. Depending on how fresh the paint is, it can go almost to the white canvas. I got it at Hobby Lobby for just a few dollars.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/19-Sep-2009/7933-IMG_003.jpg http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/19-Sep-2009/7933-IMG_001.jpg http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/19-Sep-2009/7933-IMG_002.jpg


09-19-2009, 08:35 PM
Neat tool, Debra! Appropos of scraping, I was just reading Painting Methods of the Impressionists by Bernard Dunstan. Apparently, repeated scraping was part of their routine, so we scrapers are in good company!

09-22-2009, 10:08 AM
I was once told by another artist to heat a cloth with an electric iron then press it briefly on the offending bit then scrape the slightly melted paint with the side of a painting knife. I must admit I never tried it, seemed a bit drastic and I thought I could end up with the cloth permanently attached to the painting. But I thought I'd just offer the suggestion.

09-27-2009, 12:17 PM
I'll have to invest in a scraping tool of some sort! Heating a cloth sounds interesting, not sure if I'll end up doing that.....for now I'll just try scraping and see how that goes in the future.....thanks!

09-27-2009, 03:34 PM
If the paint's still wet, simply scrape out as much as you can with a palette-knife, and then remove the remaining paint with a brush dampened with solvent - which, in the case of WMO, could be water - or, if you're happy using it, thinner.

I'd use a cheapo household-type paintbrush for that, not an expensive artist's brush.


09-30-2009, 12:37 AM
Good point on using a cheaper brush....didn't think of that. Will definitely just use water as my thinner! :)