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All Things Ampersand

Which Panel should I use? A Product Comparison

Acrylics Claybord™
We highly recommend using thin washes of acrylics on Claybord or try Gessobord for a less absorbent panel or Pastelbord for a surface with more texture and a toned ground.
Airbrush Claybord™ Claybord is ideal for airbrush.
Calligraphy Claybord™ Ampersand recommends Claybord.
Casein Claybord™
Claybord and Gessobord are both appropriate for casein.
Egg Tempera Claybord™ Use egg tempera on Claybord.  Compare with panels you are preparing yourself.
Encaustic Encausticbord™ Encausticbord is made for the unique demands of encaustic painting.
Gouache Aquabord™ We recommend Aquabord for gouache.
Graphite & Colored Pencils Claybord™ Use graphite and colored pencils with Claybord.
Inks Claybord™
We recommend Claybord with inks because they can be easily erased and manipulated.
Markers Claybord™ Use Claybord with markers and frame without glass.
Oils & Oil Sticks Claybord™
We recommend Gessobord with oils.  Claybord can also be used, but is very absorbent.
Pastels Pastelbord™ We recommend Pastelbord with all types of pastels.
Scratchboard Scratchbord™ Use Scratchbord as a professional alternative to scratchboard paper.
Watercolors Aquabord™ Use Aquabord, similar to cold press paper for very wet watercolor washes.

All things Ampersand,
Karyn Meyer-Berthel
Artist & Social Media Specialist
Ampersand Art Supply

Click here to explore the full selection of Ampersand panels and tools.

New Ampersand Products for this Spring

6″ x 8″ flat panels

A few weeks ago, we announced the new sizes, 6″ x 8″, in our Museum Series panels, packed in 3’s.  They are a fun new addition to our product line and will be immensely helpful to those who travel with panels or who work plein air.

But now. . . 

We are also carrying new profiles, 7/8″ and 1.5″ cradles for Aquabord™ and Hardbord™!  

And larger sizes for Encausticbord™ and Hardbord 2″ cradled panels, including 10″ x 10″, 16″ x 16″, 30″ x 30″ and 36″ x 36″ square plus 24″ x 36″, 30″x 40″ and 36″ x 48″.  

New Hardbord Cradles

And new 10″ x 10″ sand 16″ x 16″, flat profiles for both Claybord and Gessobord.  Seriously great stuff to build up your studio supplies.

And now, you can find Aquabord, Pastelbord, Scratchbord and Artist Panels on SALE!!!

All things Ampersand, 
Karyn Meyer-Berthel 
Artist & Social Media Specialist 
Ampersand Art Supply 

Click here to explore the full selection of Ampersand panels and tools.

New Sizes for our Panels!!

This year, we added 6″ x 8″ inch flat panels to our size offering in Claybord™, Gessobord™, Pastelbord™, Encausticbord™ and Hardbord™, due to popular demand. They are small, lightweight and packed in threes for both convenience and cost effectiveness, and perfect for plein air painting.  Both Jerry’s Artarama and Dick Blick are  carrying the new sizes.  

All things Ampersand, 
Karyn Meyer-Berthel 
Artist & Social Media Specialist 
Ampersand Art Supply 

Click here to explore the full selection of Ampersand panels and tools.

Featured Artist: Jessie Benson

Waiting to Be, 6″ x 6″

“Encaustic is the culmination of all my loves — drawing, painting, and sculpture.  It also has the surprise element of printmaking and developing black and white photography in which the final piece is never exactly like you expected, which I really like.  It is this all-in-one characteristic that keeps me returning to my studio again and again.” ~Jessie Benson

Lowfields Farm, 8″ x 10″

North Carolina artist, Jessie Benson creates encaustic work that encompasses not just her love of many art mediums, but also her deep respect and passion for nature.  She finds constant inspiration in the trees, leaves and birds around her.  “Birds are a favorite subject matter as well and I am fortunate to have a yard full of birds of many species.  They are constantly inspiring me,” she explains.  “I love to paint trees, birds, nests, flowers, really any part of nature I find beautiful.”  However, Jessie also likes the challenge of commissions, because the subjects aren’t normally what she would choose, such as a recent ship triptych.

Becoming the Moon, 6″ x 12″

Jessie has always been an art lover and began her path into painting with acrylic, ink, printmaking and even sculpture.  But it was encaustic that she was drawn to through seeing another artist’s work at a local art fair.  She explains, “after reading about encaustic painting, I went to Jerry’s to assemble the supplies including Ampersand Encausticbord™.  I loved the professional look of the cradled panels and the various sizes.  I also liked the way the final painting could be hung without needing framing.   I use all 1.5″ cradled boards because I like the way the painting depth is uniform when hanging multiple pieces for a show.  I also like knowing that when someone buys my painting they are getting quality materials.”  Jessie prepares around thirty of her boards at a time, in all different styles, ready to take on a painting at a moment’s notice.   “This variety in panel size allows me to create the piece as I have dreamed it up and having many panels on hand ready to go allows my creativity to flow freely.”  

Faith,  24″ x 18″

Jessie has new work opening tonight at the Visual Art Exchange’s MOVE show  including her favorite painting ‘Becoming The Moon.’  Come out to the opening reception with Raleigh’s First Friday events March 7 from 6-9 pm 309 W. Martin St. downtown Raleigh, NC.  Next week, Jessie will be in Woodstock, Illinois for the 27th Annual Women’s Works Show to display her work Faith, opening on March 13thTo see more of Jessie’s encaustic work, or her other art, tune in to her website at: starfruitworks.com.  As an extension of Jessie’s  love of nature, she gives a portion of her proceeds to the North Carolina nonprofit Center or Human-Earth Restoration that serves to reconnect adults and children with the natural world.

All things Ampersand,

Karyn Meyer-Berthel
Artist & Social Media Specialist
Ampersand Art Supply

Click here to explore the full selection of Ampersand panels and tools.

Cold Wax and Daniel Smith Oils on Encausticbord™

Architectural Relic 2-111, oil, collage, wax, 12″ x12″

“The translucency of the wax mixed with oils allows light to penetrate into the paint body giving it richness and vibrancy of tone.” ~Ginny Herzog

Minneapolis-based artist Ginny Herzog has been an invaluable Ampersand enthusiast for many years. This past year at NAMTA in Minneapolis, we were honored to have Ginny in our booth demonstrating her work on Ampersand panels.  Ginny shares with us her mixed media work process on Encausticbord.

I have been using Ampersand’s panels for my mixed media paintings since they first came on the market in 1994. Until recently, I worked mainly in watercolor and collage on the Aquabord™. But over the past several months, I have fallen in love with a new medium: Daniel Smith oils mixed with Dorland’s (cold) Wax Medium. I practiced my first attempts on Aquabord™ and Gessobord™, but found that the new Ampersand Encausticbord™ was a more outstanding surface for my new medium especially since it is tailor-made for wax, oils, collage and mixed media. It provides me with a rigid, smooth and consistent, archival surface that withstands the abuse of various methods that I use to achieve my textural effects.

I began by adhering the collage sections 
with Daniel® Smith’s acrylic gel medium.

First, I take digital photos of architecture, both interiors and exteriors, manipulate them in Photoshop®, frequently eliminating objects or distorting the context of the original image. I print the photos on archival laser color paper and then use the prints as collage elements in my paintings.
Then, I added the oils mixed with Dorland’s 
wax medium using the Colour Shaper® tool.

I collage my photos onto the panel with Daniel Smith Ultimate Acrylic Medium (matte) by brushing it onto the back side of the photo copy with an old flat paintbrush, then placing it onto the panel and rolling over it with a rubber brayer to make sure it has adhered completely to the panel and that there are no air bubbles.

I blotted the painted wet surface with wadded 
up plastic wrap to get this soft textural effect.

Next, using Artist’s Masking Tape, I mask out the edges of the photo collage that I want to protect from the oil paint. I apply Daniel Smith Oils mixed with the Dorland’s Wax Medium using tools such as palette knives, Colour Shapers (shown) or dough scrapers. After a few applications of the paint and cold wax, I remove the artist’s masking tape so that successive layers of paint blend well around the crisp paper edges of the collage.

The wax medium also enables me to build up more textures by blotting the painted surface with plastic wrap (example shown in yellow areas), papers or other textural materials in an additive method, as well as gouging, scraping and using odorless thinner in a subtractive method.

I frequently include architectural references as the painting begins to dry, adding linear detail by drawing into the painted surface with dental carving tools, oil sticks and Derwent® Inktense pencils. It’s nice how cold wax paintings dry and cure faster than pure oil paintings and that I can use polishing cloths to buff the painting when it is dry. I use both the flat and cradled panels. Generally, I apply three coats of ebony Minwax® stain to the cradle with a foam brush, wiping between coats and finally buffing after the last coat.
I added the architectural elements with a 
ruled triangle and a dental tool

Featured Materials
• Encausticbord™ 12″x12″, 1.5″ DEEP
• Dorland’s Wax Medium
• Daniel Smith® Oil Colors
• Daniel Smith® Acrylic Medium, Matte
• Colour Shaper® 5 tip set
• Archival laser color copies
• Artist’s Masking Tape
• Derwent® inktense 24 pencil set
• Utility knife
• T-square and triangle
• Rubber brayer
• Turpenoid® Odorless Thinner
Optional or readily available materials:
• Minwax® wood stain and foam sponge
• Wilton® dough scraper (cooking tools)
• Pick, Carver & Spatula (dental/clay carving tools)
• Plastic wrap and papers for textural effects
• Polishing cloths and Rubber Gloves
• Scissors, Cutting Mat

For more about this prolific artist: www.herzogart.com

Click here to explore the full selection of Ampersand panels and tools.