Step by Step Guide and a Chance to WIN the NEW Sculpture Canvas

There are many varieties of canvas on the market in this day and age, all of which take a similar form, and serve a similar purpose (in a sense!).  But what is unique about the latest canvas I have been asked to trial is that it enables you to create relief art.

The product is called 'Sculpture Canvas', and is a new and exciting product used to create relief art and sculptures. This is easily achieved by sculpting into the surface of the canvas using a saw, chisel, or even file to create a 3D image. After the surface has been sculpted, the finished image can then be painted on as you would with any regular canvas.

The texture of the block is a little like Oasis used in flower arranging but it is much tougher.

I was asked by the SAA to trial the product, and am excited to present a step by step guide of the processes I carried out whilst using the product in order to help give you a bigger insight as to what this product will help you to achieve.


Sculpture Canvas Chamelon


The best way to start is by making a drawing on your block, making sure your mind is set to create images and textures in a 3D style.  Decide what areas you want to stay in relief and what areas you want to remove very carefully before picking up your tools.

I have started with a simple design of a peacock (see below). This will end up a little stylised but it will give me a starting point of how the block works and enable me to move on to more complex projects in the future.

Carving into the block is surprisingly simple, you do not have to dig the cutter deeply into the block, the trick is to just gently shave the material away, and really focus on what areas you want to remain in relief.

I gradually worked over the block with the cutter until I was satisfied that I had removed enough of the surface, and had created the effect and textures that I was after. The surface looked a little rough, but I found that using a piece of sandpaper gave a lovely even surface.


Once I was happy with the relief image I painted acrylic gesso onto the surface of my canvas ready to complete the colour of the painting in acrylic.

Due to the texture of the material it does take a little scrubbing with your brush to cover the surface with the gesso. I applied a couple of thin coats until I was happy with the finish.


For the colour I used a limited palette of:

French Ultramarine
Lemon Yellow
Cadmium red
Cerulean blue


I started to paint the body of the peacock using a French Ultramarine acrylic, which I found that by adding a little white or black I was able to build up more tone and definition. I added touches of white into the body whilst the paint was still wet to create more definition on the feathers .

photo 3

I was then able to work into the body of the tail using a lemon yellow and a touch of French Ultramarine

The green for the fine feathers was mixed from the Ultramarine and yellow. By varying the mix each time you are able to create different greens making some more yellow and other a darker green.

The disc parts of the feather were covered with lemon yellow, and while the paint was still wet a touch of red was dragged through.


The finishing touches I added were to fill in the centers of the feathers with the Cerulean blue and black.

I also had to bring out the lines on the body of the tail, and any other areas which need defining with a darker line.


Finally I added the white highlights on the face, head, body and eye to complete.

First relief painting completed.

- Anita Pounder


What would you try and why? For a chance to win an 18 x 24 sculpture canvas.


For a chance to win this fantastic new product, please leave a comment on our Facebook post about this blog, discussing what you would try with this product, and why. The competition winner will be announced publicly on our page, and contacted on Monday 20/04/15. Good luck!


'I was inspired to try it because I enjoy creating texture in my paintings.'

'I did enjoy using the block - you have to think in the same way as Lino cutting. I liked that I could cut away shallow (as in the sky) and then deeper in the rivulets of water'


- Julia Kent

(painting featured below)


Julia Blaby Society of Artists used one using only a scalpel