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Old 05-13-2009, 03:06 AM
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Can i use painters tape on a canvas?

Hey guys and gals

random question but, can painters tape be used on dried Acrylic without it damaging the color(s) quailty
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Old 05-13-2009, 04:48 AM
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Re: Can i use painters tape on a canvas?

I would say yes. I do know some have concerns about the adhesive having long term issues.

There is an artist quality painters tape that should be available at most art supplies. A bit more costly but if you have concerns, it may be the way to go.
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Old 05-13-2009, 07:08 AM
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Yes, absolutely. There's no guarantee that the paint won't lift, perhaps just in little spots, but masking tapes of various kinds are widely used by artists working in acrylic.

One thing to mention in case it's not obvious: when working on canvas the texture will tend to prevent the tape sticking uniformly, if the low spots in the weave haven't been filled by primer or paint yet. So if you want a super-clean line it's probably best to work on something smoother.

There is a trick for masking on irregular surfaces, where you paint the edge of the masking with medium, let it dry, and then apply the colour, but I haven't found the results completely satisfying myself except where the texture was very slight anyway.

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Old 05-13-2009, 07:37 AM
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Re: Can i use painters tape on a canvas?

There is a blue painters tape from Scotch Tape that works well for this.
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Old 05-13-2009, 02:39 PM
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Re: Can i use painters tape on a canvas?

it is all I ever use! I also always seal it with a light varnish before painting.
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Old 05-13-2009, 04:39 PM
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Re: Can i use painters tape on a canvas?

I use acid free drafting tape. It is a little more expensive than "painters" tape but it doesn't leave visible adhesive residue and if there is any, it is archival quality. I also seal the edge with medium...learnt the hard way.

Another trick, if you are concerned about lifting, apply the tape to glass or some other surface first, remove it and then apply it to the painting surface. It takes some of the adhesive away. Just make sure you seal the edge since it is more likely to lift.
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Old 05-14-2009, 05:29 AM
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Re: Can i use painters tape on a canvas?

Hey guys and gals,

thanks for all the helpful information. Today i used some painters tape(the blue stuff) and it worked great on my painting.(i used it to mask off the edge of the canvas so i wouldnt get paint on the rest of the piece.) it worked great and did not lift any of the paint off. Its just sticky enough to the point where it will adhere but not so much that it will take paint off the canvas. I highly recommend it!

Brandon
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Old 05-14-2009, 09:18 AM
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Re: Can i use painters tape on a canvas?

Another quick tip - use a hairdryer to heat up and soften the tape as you remove it. That helps prevent lifting of the paint below.

Tina.
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Old 05-14-2009, 04:33 PM
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Re: Can i use painters tape on a canvas?

Painters' tape and drafting tape have lower adhesive levels than conventional masking tape. And therefore lower tacticity (sticking power) and less residual adhesive on the canvas. And be careful of the heat on some of the cheaper tapes. The hotter the tape, the softer the adhesive and the more resid you'll get on the canvas.

Someone told me that when he used any kind of masking tape, he coated the edge with a thin coating of gloss medium (1 part to 3 parts of water). This kept the paint from wicking under the tape and the tape from lifting the paint.

Me? I can't wait for the medium to dry. I just use cheap 3/4-inch masking tape without any sealing. I try to remove the tape before the paint is fully dry. This seems to overcome the lifting problem. Paint creep isn't a problem with tile board or hard board. With canvas, I find that I can minimize it if I burnish the edges with my fingernail first. Jim

Last edited by old_hobbyist : 05-14-2009 at 04:36 PM.
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Old 05-14-2009, 06:17 PM
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Re: Can i use painters tape on a canvas?

My experience has been that plain old painters tape works fine for getting a clean edge, does not lift paint if not left on until the paint is bone dry. I often wonder where we'd be without the low tack tapes, pefect for watercolor or acrylic and is even sometimes used for perfect horizon lines or edges in oils. Very good tool to have at ones disposal. My personal preference would be better quality artist or drafting tape if using within a critical painted area.
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Old 05-14-2009, 07:13 PM
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Re: Can i use painters tape on a canvas?

I have two rolls of the stuff (two different sizes, heh) under in my painting storage cart. Don't tell the hubby they're there so he doesn't steal them on me.
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Old 05-18-2009, 09:54 AM
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Re: Can i use painters tape on a canvas?

Another thought. Not everyone paints acrylics on canvas or hardboard. If you're using unprimed paper, make certain that you 1) burnish the region before you put the tape down, and 2) use drafting tape. It's designed to be used with paper.

If you leave resid tape adhesive on your previously painted surface, use isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol to remove it. But go easy or you may soften the acrylic.
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Old 05-18-2009, 11:51 PM
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Re: Can i use painters tape on a canvas?

There is also a (relatively) new tape that has even less "stickiness" than the standard blue and green painter's tapes. It is Razor Edge by Shurtape, sometimes called "Razor Edge Gold" due to the color. I've found that this tape is MUCH easier to use than the blue tape, and has left NO residue. In fact, I bought this to use for masking plastic model kits, since the tape I had been using was lifting areas.

In decreasing order of stickiness, it's "regular" masking tape, green painter's tape, blue painter's tape, and then Razor Edge. I've also used it on paper (regular printer paper and some heavier paper from my sketch pad), and had no ill effects, other than a single corner that I messed up by trying to hurry when it was time to remove the tape.

But, truth be told, I've not actually used it on a canvas, so I can't say how well it works there.


Michael
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Old 05-24-2009, 06:52 PM
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Re: Can i use painters tape on a canvas?

I use the blue tape, specifically designed for painters, in the Scotch brand on canvas and wood. A little trick I've learned to avoid paint seeping under the edge of the tape is.....after placing the tape and pressing the edge down with your finger, apply two coats of Clear Glaze Medium or Sealer over the edge your will be painting on....after applying your paint, lift the tape before the last layer of paint dries...works like a charm.
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