making panels tutorial

making your own panels is super easy - here's how I do it:
first- I use masonite that is readily available at the big box hardware stores.  It comes in big sheets or half sheets for under $5.  Here are some that are kicking around my studio -
Ive got a guy (thanks Dad!) who cuts them down to whatever size I want on his table saw.  You can also cut them with a box cutter and metal ruler - it just takes alot longer.
here is a stack of 10"x10" 's

after that I sand each one down - usually with my palm sander but regular sand paper works just fine

next they need to be coated with a gesso - this is to make a nice ground for painting and is crucial for keeping the oil paint from seeping through.

 I use whatever gesso Ive got on hand -  


after one coat of the gesso - the panels get sanded again and another coat of gesso goes on. 
I almost never paint on plain white so the last step is a basecoat ... almost always orange or red.  just cuz.

 and here they are ready to go!