How To Protect Acrylic Paintings On Canvas
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How To Protect Acrylic Paintings On Canvas – Useful Tips For You

Have you ever thought of protecting acrylic paintings on canvas?

Do you know the right way of it?

Well, protecting acrylic paintings on canvas is a must to help your artwork last longer.

If you intend to protect acrylic paintings on canvas, scroll down to read this article. I’m sure that its useful tips will definitely meet your demand.

Why should we protect acrylic paintings on canvas?


Nowadays, people are likely to use acrylics to paint on almost any surface to make artworks due to its versatility. Acrylics can be used for several styles as well as achieve enormous different effects.

Moreover, they dry quickly and leave a soft exterior. However, it explains why acrylic paintings are prone to collect dust and dirt.

For this reason, some people advise that we should place our artworks behind glass.

Well, as an aesthetic lover, I prefer enjoying the beauty of artwork without glass.

Additionally, an acrylic painting on canvas can alter easily and ruin the visual due to humidity or temperature. What is more, if your painting leaves an uneven finish, which has both glossy and matte parts, it will make the viewers disappointed.

That’s why I think that you should offer protection to acrylic paintings on canvas.

But how?

How to protect acrylic paintings on canvas?

There is a recommendation that we should varnish acrylic paintings on canvas.

Do you know what a varnish?

Well, a varnish is a clear transparent finish, which is seen as a protective layer of the painting. It is a combination of solvents, resin, and oil, which is commonly applied to the paint surface to protect acrylic paintings on canvas.

Also, apart from enhancing longevity, varnishing acrylic paintings will make the finish more glossy.

If you are eager to find out how to varnish acrylic paintings on canvas, keep scrolling down.

Choose the type of varnish


There are two types of varnish, including spray and brush.

It is essential to assess the paint surface and its texture in order to choose the more appropriate type.

For example, for those artworks that are unable to remove and have a smooth finish, you had better brush varnish.

On the other hand, for such high textured or impasto paintings on canvas, spraying varnish is much more convenient and brings higher effectiveness.

Prepare before varnishing

  • Remember to apply an isolation coating first.
  • Use a lint-free cloth to wipe off the paint surface to make sure the surface is clean and dry enough before varnishing. For acrylic painting, it takes about a day or two to dry.
  • Use a clean jar and a flat, large, clean brush in case you will brush varnish. Remember to use distilled water to mix and stir the varnish by a clean stick.
  • Prepare some paper towels or garbage bags to protect the surface where you will varnish.
  • Place the painting horizontally on a flat and dust-free room.

Apply varnish on acrylic paintings on canvas with a brush

Step 1: Use a clean and large brush for better varnishing. There are some brushes which are made for varnish available on the current market, but it is not necessary. Make sure that your brush is not too stiff if you want a smooth finish.

Step 2: Use a shallow, large dish to pour our the varnish in order to control the amount on your brush well. You should do this process quickly yet gently.

Step 3: Dip the brush into the varnish. You should dip it about 1/4 to 1/3 of the bristles

Let’s apply such long and even strokes from the top to the bottom of your artwork, from left to right. Do not miss any areas so that you will not have to revarnish.

Besides, to avoid leaving visible marks of the brush on your painting, you can overlap each stroke slightly. Especially, multiple thin layers are better.

Step 4: Cover your painting on canvas after having done the varnish with a large board. You had better avoid the amount of dirt or dust that adheres to the wet layer by not touching it or moving it to another place. Let it dry for more than 6 hours or a week for sure.

Spray varnish on acrylic paintings on canvas

Step 1: Follow Step 1 above as the preparation and process are similar.

Step 2: Use your strength to shake the can of varnish to ensure the chemicals inside are mixed well to produce a perfect finish. Repeat this action after every few minutes of spraying.

Step 3: Before spraying your acrylic painting, let’s check out on an old canvas to see if the nozzle still spits well or the flow is right.

Remember to wipe and clean the nozzle of the spray frequently during the process of spraying varnish to avoid being clogged.

Step 4: Keep the spray can away from your acrylic painting on canvas at the right distance according to the recommendation of the manufacturer. It is about 12 inches (30 cm). This distance can prevent the artwork from having spray concentrated in an area.

Step 5: Start spraying from the edge of the canvas to the other side gently. Make sure not to leave visible signs of start and stop lines. It is better to spray more than one layer.

Then, let it dry naturally for a week or more.

Bottom line

It cannot be denied that varnishing is the best way to protect your acrylic paintings on canvas. Apart from its effect on longevity, a varnish can make your artworks shinier and bring a matte, gloss, or satin finish according to your demand. What you need to do is choose the right type of varnish and follow the instructions.

Do you see this article useful enough? If you have something new to share with us, please comment below. Thanks for reading!

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