Thursday, September 21, 2006

The $1000 Painting

For the artists that don't think about it and for the collectors buying art, the price tag is broken down many times.
For a piece of art that sells in a gallery for $1000, the gallery genereally gets 50%. That leaves the artist with $500. The frame might cost the artist $75 if he or she is lucky. That leaves $425. Then the government at the end of the year will want about 25 to 30% of that leaving the artist with a total of about $260 for that $1000 painting. That's the reality of being a painter and trying to make a living at it. Think about it! But not too much because you might become depressed.

Using Masonite for Painting

I have found that painting on masonite is good for several reasons and I use it exclusively now for small paintings. Since my summer studio has limited space, the masonite takes up 1/5 the room as one piece of canvas. It also gives me a surface that I can work more detail into than using canvas.
I use to buy a 4x8' sheet of masonite, cut it into small pieces and gesso the boards but I have discovered that I can buy a sheet of masonite already primed at the large home supply centers. The board I'm talking about is used in inexpensive kitchens as backspashes and such. It has a shinny surface on it but if you take sandpaper and remove that high gloss finish, I've found that my acrylic paints stick extremely well with no problem. This saves me the trouble of applying a coat of gesso. If the board is still too smooth for you, add a thin coat of gesso. One thin coat will do the job to give it some extra tooth. An 8x10" piece after you cut it up will cost you about 20 cents or less. Don't use really large pieces of this or masonite as it can warp. The largest I use is 16x20" and I've had no trouble.
The home centers will also cut the sheets for you for a small cost. Just be sure they are very accurate when they cut it so the pieces will fit in your standard size frames. It's a good idea to use standard sizes too. That way you can mix and match frames easily.
You can view a 3 minute video on this subject HERE.