Gourd Carving – Painting The Inside Of A Gourd Without Color Bleed

Painting the inside of a gourd without color bleed image
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My first gourd carving project was somewhat spur of the moment. I started with the carving itself just trying out the tools to see how the gourd carved. When it was all said and done the one thing I would like to have done differently was with the painting on the inside. Painting the inside of a gourd without color bleed was something I did not consider with this first project.

As the┬ácarving became more complex and detailed I ended up carving it very thin in some areas. The final carving looked great, and I thought a good way to finish it off would be to try and paint the inside of the gourd like I’ve seen others do.

Because this project was not planned out beforehand and just took shape throughout the carving process I did not know what to expect with painting the inside.

Painting The Inside Of A Gourd Without Color Bleed

like all kinds of wood gourds are very absorbent. That is how they receive nutrients as they grow. This can work out in your favor or not, and in this instance it did not work out in my favor.

As I began applying the paint to the inside of the gourd I noticed the color bleeding, or absorbing more readily than I had expected it to. This caused a problem as a painting progressed.

The very thin areas of the gourd carving started to show some of the black paint bleeding to the surface. It is very minor, but something that was very annoying at the same time. I found that it is not extremely noticeable, but upon close inspection it really stands out.

Solving The Color Bleed Problem

For the Acanthus Leaf Gourd Carving project I planned on painting the inside black from the beginning. This allowed me to better plan the steps I was going to take to ensure maximum carving area.

I decided to use a procedure that I follow often during airbrush painting projects. This is to apply a inter-coat clear over areas that I do not want color to bleed.

This was accomplished by first applying several coats of clear coat onto the inside of the gourd before painting the inside of the gourd. The clear coat was allowed to absorb into the gourd, but seeing as it is clear it does not affect the final look and finish of the gourd itself.

Painting The Inside Of The Gourd Black painting the inside of a gourd without color bleed image

Painting the inside of a gourd without color bleed is important for the finished look of the piece. When I applied the black to the inside of the gourd it essentially sat on top of the clear coat that was previously applied. This ensures that the color, in this case, black stays on the surface of the clear coat and cannot be absorbed into the gourd itself.

Now because the black sits on the surface of the clear coat I do not have to worry about how much room I have to carve. It gives me full access to the entire thickness of the gourd for carving.

Uses For This Technique of Color Application

There are many uses for this technique of color application on the inside, as well as, the outside of gourds or other carving projects. Whenever color is going to be applied to the surface and there is question of bleeding, or mixing of colors being applied this technique will help.

There are many times when I am painting or applying light washes of color that I would like to keep the colors separated and avoid them mixing together to create a color I do not want.

I am very glad that this technique works so well in my favor. Now the Acanthus Leaf Gourd Carving Project can be carved extremely thin without the consequence of having colors show through where I do not want them to.

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