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Author Topic: Surface finish difference – sprayed vs. rolled  (Read 667 times)
Johnny_Boy
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« on: December 13, 2012, 05:58:46 PM »
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So, I did almost a whole year of art show schedule  by rolling the finish on my canvas using 8 inch roller with Timeless Gloss on my floor all over my house. Worked pretty decent until the volume picked up, so I decided to spray. I will be spraying moving forward for sure.

But with the spray finish, I get this shimmering look to it vs. smooth gloss finish. If you’ve seen gloss canvas (Crystaline or Epson Gloss) you will know what I am talking about, that shimmering finish that seems to reflect lights differently. I get the similar look.

I spray it down in two passes in medium thickness. After I spray it, I can tell it has texture that follows the canvas texture. I was hoping it will level out as it drys out, and it does some, but not all the way. I am laying down more Timeless than when I was rolling it.

With a roller, I can push it down to the grooves making it smoother.

Any tips on how to resolve this? Do I need to put down more? Thin the Timeless before spraying?
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Dan Berg
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« Reply #1 on: December 13, 2012, 10:56:54 PM »
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I spray everything and I am trying to interpret what you mean?
Are prints hanging upright to spray?  If spraying Timeless,2 light coats should be perfect.
Sometimes a 3rd. coat but not very often.(15 minutes drying time between coats.) Those 2 spray coats are about equal to 1 heavy rolled coat.
What sheen,gloss? What type canvas?
Sounds like too much finish but need a little more info.
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Johnny_Boy
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« Reply #2 on: December 13, 2012, 11:47:05 PM »
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Prints are hanging vertically when I spray. I print on BC lyve and Epson Exhibition matte canvas.  I don't do 15 minute drying time in between. Just right after the first pass.  I am using Timeless Gloss.

It is possible that  I am laying down a bit too thick?
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bill t.
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« Reply #3 on: December 14, 2012, 11:52:30 AM »
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I suspect you have been filling in the canvas valleys between the ridges when you were rolling, so that you get a mechanically flat surface.

You can do that too with spraying, with very aggressive coats.  But since you are applying thinner coats with spraying, the canvas is able to soak up the paint equally in both ridges and valleys, and that ripply contour is maintained rather than being filled in.

You could apply a lot more thinner coats to get the "filled in" look with spraying.  It sounds like your rolling technique is to inundate the print in a single coat.

You can also inundate the print with spraying, which I used to do with very water proof Sunset Select and Glamour II.  I would apply two thick coats with no time in between, with the paint so thick it was on the borderline of running.  Was definitely a different, more "filled-in" look than I get with the gentler, multi coat spraying I do now as required by gloss canvas.

But bottom line is, thin coats will have better transparency than thick ones.  But the flip side of the coin is, you get very different reflective qualities with "filled in" canvases versus canvases where the ridge/valley contours are still present.

Let's suppose there's a light source coming from right behind our heads.

--With a "filled-in" coating the reflections will be something like you see on glass. You'll see small, almost specular reflections confined to small areas.

--With a "ridge-valley" canvas, the reflections will be more diffuse and less intense, but they will slightly haze out a larger area. Which I guess looks like "sheen."

It all comes down to aesthetics.

Of course there are other things that affect a sprayed surface coating.  If you spray from too great a distance, or with too little spray for the ambient temperature and humidity, the paint will land on the canvas is a kind of tacky condition.  That leads to a hazy looking, sort of matte surface coat.  It's important that paint land on the surface very wet, even if it then dries quickly.

I now use very thin coats because my gloss canvas is not very water proof.  I do a few things to assure super-even coats and consistency.  On panels where I tape up my canvases for painting there are tick marks top and bottom at 4" spacing to help me get very evenly spaced swipes.  I also time each swipe with a little metronome clipped to my shirt.  And I always weight the gun after each coat to double check the amount of paint applied.  It's worth the effort.

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Johnny_Boy
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« Reply #4 on: December 16, 2012, 01:27:44 AM »
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...  If you spray from too great a distance, or with too little spray for the ambient temperature and humidity, the paint will land on the canvas is a kind of tacky condition.

Bill, so how close do you spray? I think I am about a foot away from the surface. I am probably doing more like 8 inches apart between the lines. You are doing 4 inches? Wow this is pretty tight.
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bill t.
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« Reply #5 on: December 16, 2012, 03:11:25 AM »
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I spray from about 9 inches, with a very symmetrical fan about 8 inches wide.  A foot is probably a little risky, especially on warm or dry days.

If I just spray a single blast against a dry surface, the pattern looks like a rectangle maybe 2 x 8 inches, but with very rounded corners.  But more rectangular than elliptical.  The 4 inch spacing partly comes out of the fact that my "booth" doesn't let me light the surface well enough to see the wetness of the spray, so I need to use quantitative rather than visual techniques.  That's one reason I weigh the gun pretty often.  After about the third vertical swipe I sometimes poke at the recently painted, non-image parts of the canvas to get an idea how wet the coats are.  With that 8 inch wide fan I'm getting a 2x overlap on each coat.  I put down one coat right on the 4 inch marks, let it dry 10 or so minutes, then put down a second coat 1/3 between the marks, and then the final third pass 2/3 between the marks.  Gives me extremely even results.  I spray only vertically.

Can be useful to make a video of yourself, seen from the side.  Or at least have somebody watch you for consistency.  Almost everybody varies their distance too much, especially at the end of each swipe.  And almost everybody speeds up over time, which is why I use a metronome to time each swipe.

The trick to getting the symmetrical fan is to adjust it when spraying hot water through the gun to clean it.  Takes about a minute of fiddling around with the cap on my high mileage Fuji sprayer to get the fan looking really good.  Shoot the water against a dry surface, like concrete.  Then I'm careful not to bump the cap.
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Dan Berg
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« Reply #6 on: December 16, 2012, 05:13:48 AM »
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Just to add a couple of things to Bills response.
If your tip is not adjusted properly or you are too far away your spray may create a spackel finish almost like auto undercoating.
Really easy to see if that is happening just move your gun a little closer and you may have to slow down your stroke if it is misting.
Overlap each coat wet on wet with your nice fluid motion and you should be good.
Good lighting is imperative. You must be able to stand at an angle with proper illumination to see your product
Coverage and overlap.
A good light to buy is the yellow and black contractor lights on a stand at Lowes or Home Depot.
Set it up at an angle to illuminate your canvas and you will be good to go. 2 are even better. Inexpensive too.

I really need to do a several minute video tutorial.
Does anyone know if we can upload video to Lu La and size restrictions?
« Last Edit: December 16, 2012, 05:32:02 AM by Dan Berg » Logged

JeffKohn
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« Reply #7 on: December 16, 2012, 11:08:58 AM »
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Does anyone know if we can upload video to Lu La and size restrictions?
Don't know about LuLa but you could always post it on YouTube, make it non-searchable if you one has to have the URL to view it.

BTW I just want to say I've been lurking on these canvas threads a lot lately as I'm learning this stuff for myself, and have really found the info from the experienced guys like Dan, Bill, John, and others extremely helpful. Thanks guys!
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JeffKohn
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« Reply #8 on: December 16, 2012, 11:12:13 AM »
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--With a "filled-in" coating the reflections will be something like you see on glass. You'll see small, almost specular reflections confined to small areas.

--With a "ridge-valley" canvas, the reflections will be more diffuse and less intense, but they will slightly haze out a larger area. Which I guess looks like "sheen."

It all comes down to aesthetics.
If I'm understanding your descriptions I prefer the "sheen" look myself. I've been spraying 2-3 light coats, and find that it takes the "sparkle" from the uncoated canvas down considerably. To me it looks great, the coated canvases have the depth and texture of matte paper (even more so), but with gamut/dmax almost as good as fiber-gloss paper.

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