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Author Topic: "darken" a canvas after printing/spraying  (Read 1728 times)

mstevensphoto

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"darken" a canvas after printing/spraying
« on: November 18, 2015, 12:14:43 pm »

Hi folks. I've got an idiot mother in law who has convinced one of my good clients that the 30x40 canvas they bought and loved is too bright. strangling her isn't an option and rather than arguing with the client over whether it is, in fact, too bright, I'm wondering if there is anything that can be sprayed on an already sprayed canvas to bring it down a shade? I'm hoping to avoid a reprint situation.
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Mark Lindquist

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Re: "darken" a canvas after printing/spraying
« Reply #1 on: November 18, 2015, 05:39:16 pm »

Hi folks. I've got an idiot mother in law who has convinced one of my good clients that the 30x40 canvas they bought and loved is too bright. strangling her isn't an option and rather than arguing with the client over whether it is, in fact, too bright, I'm wondering if there is anything that can be sprayed on an already sprayed canvas to bring it down a shade? I'm hoping to avoid a reprint situation.

You know, I can't say for sure, but one thing you could try knowing it won't hurt the canvas is Damar Varnish.

If you're not too concerned about longevity, I do know a trick, and that is to use Watco Stain Wax Dark, and rag it on.  It will seem impossibly dark at first, but as it dries it will lighten significantly.  Once it has dried you can buff it to you preference regarding a soft sheen.

You could also add umber to the damar varnish - it is a technique used by painters to darken and homogenize colors in finished canvases.

There are a few products available:

Gam-var label or Windsor Newton Conserv-Art varnish and something called "Retouch".

I think if you were able to get a base coat of Damar via a brush application, you could go over it with a rag solution of the Watco Satin Wax Dark - it really is amazing.

I've had about 45 years of experience applying it, and it can be tricky if you don't have at least some experience with rag finishes on canvas.

But it is an idea for you.  If it works, it could be your solution, if not, reprint darker I guess.

Another idea would be to print another canvas that is LIGHTER,  Show them both and say you've reprinted theirs darker.  LOL.

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ddolde

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Re: "darken" a canvas after printing/spraying
« Reply #2 on: November 18, 2015, 07:22:35 pm »

I'd go with strangling her.
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gigdagefg

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Re: "darken" a canvas after printing/spraying
« Reply #3 on: November 18, 2015, 09:22:23 pm »

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Wayne Fox

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Re: "darken" a canvas after printing/spraying
« Reply #4 on: November 19, 2015, 01:54:55 am »

Why would you  need to "argue" with the client?  I assume you are open minded enough that you believe she is firmly wrong, hard to believe a client would trust her opinion over your expert opinion.

I might not strangle her, but I wouldn't be afraid to let her know why she's wrong.
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drmike

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Re: "darken" a canvas after printing/spraying
« Reply #5 on: November 19, 2015, 02:19:51 am »

Could you perhaps agree that it's slightly too bright, take it back to assess it carefully and suggest that it only needs a subtle adjustment which will take a few days to perform and return it unchanged? The customer did originally like the print.
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dgberg

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Re: "darken" a canvas after printing/spraying
« Reply #6 on: November 19, 2015, 06:52:05 am »

Boy does this bring up some old memories, some I would much rather forget from my cabinetry days.
There are just some people that cannot be pleased no matter what you say or do for them.
As the finisher for my business I learned early on to have the client sign off on the custom stain they chose.
Especially cherry as it aged so much over time and the patina often took a year or longer to reach it's final aged color.
I received a call from a client who was unsatisfied with the color of her home office. She insisted it was not what she ordered.
Drove out to see her with the sample with her signature on the back. Even after showing her the matching sample she insisted it was not the same.
After a little more complaining she said she just plain did not like it. Now that I could react to. I told her very strongly that her selected finish choice was permanent and
that I was sorry she did not like it but their was nothing I could do for her. (You cannot alter the color on a catalized topcoated large built in like her $20,000 home office project.)
Again no relation to your issue but it just shows you some folks will just need something to complain about.
Never heard another word from here.
« Last Edit: November 19, 2015, 02:48:26 pm by Dan Berg »
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chez

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Re: "darken" a canvas after printing/spraying
« Reply #7 on: November 19, 2015, 07:46:45 am »

Ummm...did you stop and have another look at the print...maybe it is too bright. Nothing like some solid feedback from others. Have you seen the print hanging in it's environment...the surrounding colours and lighting could really influence how the print looms.

I'd approach this with an open mind. Feedback always good and just because it comes from your mother in law does not automatically make it wrong...
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mstevensphoto

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Re: "darken" a canvas after printing/spraying
« Reply #8 on: November 19, 2015, 12:12:36 pm »

thanks all for the both helpful, insightful and funny responses.

I actually considered taking it back, sitting on it for a week and giving it back to her. I'm open to the idea that it's too bright, but it's one of my signature style pieces that I do all the time and I actually DID review it to see if I wasn't just smoking something to give her a too bright canvas. after careful picking I'm sure that it will look worse darker. The issue which I've tried to point out is that one of her children is wearing a white shirt while everyone else is in middle/dark tones. he just appears brighter because he is in a sea of white. My MAIN issue that always pisses me off is her mother in law who "used to work for another photographer" - well zipity doo da, I used to work at a restaurant (taco bell) I don't ever use that as a basis for my critique of the many fine modern mexican restaurants I now love and slpurge on.

Ultimately I'll offer her a reprint if I need to, she's paid enough that it will be ok. If I don't have to that'd be lovely. it's just always insulting to have some random person who isn't my customer spoil my customer (who was initially thrilled). I don't even like MY mother in law, how am I supposed to be nice to someone else's? :)
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Ernst Dinkla

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Re: "darken" a canvas after printing/spraying
« Reply #9 on: November 19, 2015, 04:01:45 pm »

If that canvas has OBAs in the coating I recommend you put it in a very sunny spot the whole week. An extra layer of UV blocking varnish at the end of the week will do wonders too then.

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