aquaboard solves a lot of watercolor problems

Aquaboard, called Aquabord is made by Ampersand. It has advantages over the traditional watercolor paintings on paper.

We modern artists have multiple choices for watercolor supplies. Watercolor may even be painted on a canvas. In addition to paper and canvas, there are hard-boards made especially for watercolors.

This beautiful watercolor surface is Ampersand's Aquabord. These paintings have the beauty of watercolor without the hassle of paper watercolor paintings.

Paintings on Aquabord require:

  • no stretching,
  • no mats and
  • no glass.
Use Aquaboard: Aquabord for watercolor paintings.The "Freedom" of painting on Aquabord

my watercolor story

When I began painting watercolor the paintings were on Arches watercolor paper. It is an excellent, traditional watercolor paper. The finished paintings were matted and framed under glass.

My husband and I were enjoying doing the street art festivals in Florida.

disaster struck

At a festival on the Gulf Coast, the winds started gusting up to 60 MPH. Some of the artist's tents on the end of the row started blowing down!

Even though we were sandwiched between other tents in the middle of row, we got nervous about allowing customers into our tent. If the tent went down, they could possibly be injured by broken glass.

The paintings were in danger, too. If watercolors on paper get moisture behind the glass, they can be water stained or even grow mildew.

there had to be another way!

After we got home from the festival, I started pouring through all my art magazines and books.

That's when I found out about Aquabord, made by Ampersand. It is an United States company near Austin, Texas.

what is aquaboard?

Aquabord (the brand name) is a hardboard made especially for watercolor, gouache, casein, ink and even acrylic paintings. Ampersand the manufacturer left the "a" out of aquaboard to make their brand name.

It is acid-free and completely archival. Aquaboard (Aquabord) is made on a warp-resistant 1/8" FSC-certified hardboard. The base panel is totally sealed. Then one side of the panel is coated with an archival, acid-free kaolin clay.

The surface of has a texture similar to cold-pressed watercolor paper. However, it is whiter than watercolor papers. The white panel provides a wonderful brilliance to our paintings.

The panel does not buckle, warp or shrink, no matter how much water we put on it. Paint colors may be lifted back off the surface to reveal the white board.

The colors remain vibrant and the finished painting may be framed without glass. How wonderful is that!

A short video on painting with aquabord

the many advantages of aquabord

The many perks of Aquabord have made it my favorite watercolor support!

we may frame the paintings without a mat or glass

This is what made me try Aquabord in the beginning. No more worries at the outdoor festivals.

No more carrying around heavy watercolor paintings framed under glass. And we didn't have to be concerned about broken glass ever again.

The paintings are much lighter weight without glass. They are resistant to dirt, moisture and mildew. There is no glare from glass.

If a watercolor painting on paper was hit by the sun at the outdoor art festivals - oh, oh!

In the Florida humidity, the warmth of the sun could cause condensation behind the glass. Potentially, it could stain the painting or mat. In the worst case scenario, mildew might grow.

No worries with Aquabord!

we may even display our paintings without a frame

There are 2 styles of aquaboard.

  • The panels are available as a flat panel. It requires a frame.
  • A flat panel cradled on the front of a birch plywood frame.

Cradled Aquaboard panels hang and display without any additional framing. The painting may go onto the birch sides. Or the wood sides may be stained or painted to compliment the painting. 

no stretching is necessary

We don't have to stretch any paper.

Unlike watercolor paper, the Aquaboard does not need to be stretched. It will not warp, no matter how much water we put on it.

our paintings shine with brilliant color

My favorite thing about painting on aquaboard is the beautiful colors.

The light reflects off the clay surface and shines up through the watercolors to create bold, lively colors.

Watercolors on paper sink into the paper and lose their brilliance. You get beautiful colors by painting on Aquabord.

we may remove paint from aquabord

We can lift wet paint off with a damp, soft brush. If the layer of paint underneath has dried, it will remain fixed when you take off the top layer.

Dry paint will come off with a damp, stiff brush. It can remove the paint all the way down to the surface. We may also use a knife, claybord tools or sandpaper to make highlights and remove paint.

Masking fluid works well on Aquabord without any problems.

When the painting is thoroughly dry, apply 2-3 coats of Krylon UV resistant spray. The spray protects the watercolors from moisture and dust. The painting does not require a mat or glass for display.

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Aquaboard is an awesome choice!

Today Aquabord made by Ampersand is my go-to watercolor support. It has been my favorite watercolor support for over 20 years. I am very pleased with the product. It is a joy to paint on!

aquabord
by ampersand

Pack of 3 Aquabords - 5x7"  1/8" thick for watercolors

krylon UV
resistant spray

Aerosol spray: non-yellowing, moisture resistant

ampersand
took kit

Tools to scratch the paint to expose the white board.

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