photo friday–faux bois background

22 Feb 2013

This month I’m celebrating my #oneword “give”. I’m so glad to have you along for the journey. To read more about my #oneword adventure for 2013 click here. Check out the links at the bottom of this post to read more about other “giving” situations!

Today I’m “giving” you some wood (and a quick how-to!)

IMG_4020This isn’t the most exciting photo of wood you’ve ever seen, because it’s NOT wood! This is actually gesso and fluid acrylics! I think it makes a very fun background and I hope you are inspired to use this image as a great layer for a collage, an artist trading card, an art journal page, or something else fun.

I also hope it inspires you to try making a faux bois background yourself.

You will need a faux bois tool to create this pattern. You can pick one up in the decorative paint section of a craft store, hardware store, or a paint store.

  • I used a nice sturdy watercolor paper for this image and taped off the section I wanted to paint with blue painter’s masking tape.
  • Next, I used a earthy mustard color (fluid acrylic) to paint a base coat using an old hotel key card and let that dry completely.
  • To create the wood grain, I laid on a thick layer of gesso over the mustard-colored paint and dragged the faux bois tool through the gesso while slowly rocking it back and forth (this creates the cool grain texture. This technique will pull up parts of the gesso completely letting the mustard color show through here and there. Let the gesso dry completely.
  • Next I covered the surface with a brown fluid acrylic paint using the hotel key card in the direction of the grain. This lets the high parts show through differently then the low sections.
  • Let this top coat just dry for about a minute and then start scrubbing with a baby wipe. This will reveal even more of the gesso texture and some of the yellow will show as a layer beneath the brown.

If you try your own faux bois with gesso background or use this photo in a piece of art, upload it here for us all to see.

Happy Photo Friday!





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on 1 Apr 2013 7:38 AM

My kids revel in April Fool's Day. They spend hours conjuring up devilishly creative ways to "get" their parents. (The best was a fake letter from Olivia's college of choice rescinding her acceptance. Or maybe that was the worst.) We've

on 17 Aug 2013 11:30 AM

This is so cool! I've never seen this effect done with gesso before and must try it. I did a closet in faux wood grain, that I'm very pleased with, although it only has the texture of the paint layers. The gesso would make it so much more dramatic. Thanks for the inspiration and have a great day. :-)