Composing and Painting with Clear Contact Paper

Students are taught how to create a 3-6 color painting on a sealed surface. Clear Contact paper is used to plan color and shape distributions. Paintings are created by using the contact paper as a guide through the composition, sometimes as a stencil, with parts of the surface spared paint. The effect is a silk-screen look, tightly composed into the surface parameters.

Clear Contact Paper gives a simultaneous directness and a distance to planning compositions. Once applied to the art surface, it protects the ground layer until that section is ready for paint. Sketches are drawn on the contact paper surface and can be more expressive than usual. The process will formalize some of the expressiveness of the original sketch, but most of it will remain, benefitting the composition with unusually bold ideas.

The approach here is the same as working in the dry media ground or the oil ground: using a limited pallet, compose an image color by color, alternating between lights and darks and mid values to draw out a form from the ground color.


Masonite Shape

A premade, pre-painted shape begins this project. Students visualize a form within the shape and use clear contact paper to plan and create the image. 

delphic sibyl

Painting on Glass

Clear contact paper helps to paint an image onto glass. A classical painting is reimagined and painted onto glass in one color; a sgraffito technique creates a half tone.  


Painting on Wood

Using clear contact paper, a table set or TV tray is painted with a design. Clear contact paper projects can be made to glow under UV light .