Hello fellow artistes! This is my recipe for homemade primer paint...when you need primer (also known as gesso -) in a pinch do this instead! Don’t you just hate it when you have all the ingredients to do something EXCEPT for one? I know, it’s a total bummer!
Application of white primer is very important, especially if you are going to paint crafts made from self-hardening clay, as it’s very important to seal it correctly due to its tendency to be affected by moisture.
Anyway long story short, I needed a basic coat of primer and a little research told me how to come up with a batch that has all the essential components. Now I will share that recipe with you today.
All of these are things you’re pretty familiar with:
1 tbsp of Mod Podge or PVA/white craft glue
1 /4 cup of cornstarch or talcum powder
1 tbsp white acrylic paint (this is the brand I use)
Storage container with fitted lid
You may want to get yourself a dust mask (very timely suggestion, what with this health crisis and all?), as i have heard that talcum powder may cause a little irritation for a small segment of the population. I didn’t, but that is up to you. I have heard that there are some hazards associated with talcum powder so cornstarch may be the better way to go.
Another product that I’ve heard other artists mention is plaster of paris. I have used that before and it may be a good substitute as well.
Mix the Glue and Water
This is going to be very similar to the approach for making your own decoupage glue – another gem I’ve discovered when you run out of the “real thing”! I’ve got a half-empty bottle of a knockoff brand of Mod Podge. It is the equivalent of about a third or half a cup. So it will work perfectly for this project!
I am going to pour the hot water into it. I’m starting off with a fourth of a cup with plans to add a little more if necessary. Next I added the spoonful of Mod Podge. Mix the contents into your chosen container. Stir together the glue/water mixture thoroughly.
It will not be very thick (not much at first, anyway.) Now add the white paint. If you’re using a “heavy body” acrylic artists’ type, which is a little thick, it will improve the texture, and will help make the mixture white as it should be – about a tablespoon or 2 will be good. Continue to mix the ingredients together.
Cornstarch is a natural thickening agent used in various cooking endeavors, like pudding, soup and stews. I also used it in the process of this clay recipe to thicken it – it’s a very commonplace ingredient and it will thicken your homemade primer, too.
You could also use baby powder, as cornstarch is one of the present ingredients (trouble is, it’s hard to measure due to the twisty cap and the fact that it has a little lingering fragrance, but it will work) Measure out the cornstarch and sprinkle it into your mixture.
Now, commence stirring…
You may want to add a little more than the amount I suggested; after stirring for a few minutes if it’s still a little thin, go ahead and add a little more cornstarch. I did – sometimes you have to adjust your recipes . Keep on stirring…
It’s going to look something like this, with a consistency close to that of pancake batter. I took a plastic spoon and took a little dip and let it run back into the bowl to check for the right amount of thickness.
There you have it! Homemade primer paint ready to go when you need to do a base coat, protect a substrate, ensure an even top coat, and maintain vibrant colors, which are all of the main reasons behind the application of gesso.
Using and Storing Your Homemade Primer
Store in the container with the lid (may want to label it too,)We didn’t use anything perishable so it should keep plenty easily.
Use a brush or sponge applicator to apply it to your proposed object. It should dry naturally and quickly just like the store bought kind.
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That’s it – that’s how you make homemade primer paint! Good luck!