Thanks, Shona, for the photo above.Below is from an email I received from Shona Cole, author of The Artistic Mother. A couple of people have asked her about their paper curling as they gesso to prime. She wanted me to share her response with The Artistic Mother Art Group so that everyone can benefit from the information.
1) THE PAPER WILL CURL UP A LITTLE AT THE SIDES THAT IS NORMAL...WHEN DRY, WHICH IS A SHORT TIME, I PUT THE STACK UNDER A BIG BOOK OVER NIGHT.
2) A LOT OF CURLING (IE. CURLING UP ON ITSELF LIKE A SWEDISH FISH IN LOVE) MAY BE BECAUSE YOU ARE USING TOO MUCH WATER...I USE ONLY A DAMP BRUSH AND VERY LITTLE WATER TO SPREAD THE GESSO. (IF YOU ARE GESSOING OVER WORDS ON JUNK MAIL AND YOU WANT THEM TO SHOW THROUGH, YOU WILL USE MORE WATER, BUT STILL NOT THAT MUCH... YOU WILL HAVE TO FIND THAT BALACE BY PRACTICE.)
3) USE A WHOLE LOT OF GESSO. SPREAD THE GESSO ON THICK. IT IS NOT A WASH WHEN YOU ARE PREPARING PAPERS. YOU DON'T WANT TO SEE ANY PLAIN PAPER WHEN DONE (THE COLORED PAPER WILL TINT THE GESSO A LITTLE, BUT IT IS A SUBTLE EFFECT.)
4) HUMIDITY CAN ALSO BE A FACTOR. IF IT IS HUMID AND YOUR PAPERS ARE CURLING, JUST STICK THE PAPERS UNDER A BOOK OVER NIGHT!
5) THE TYPE OF PAPER SHOULDN'T MAKE MUCH DIFFERENCE, BUT THE LIGHTER THE PAPER WEIGHT THE MORE CURLING YOU SHOULD EXPECT.
6) DON'T WORRY TOO MUCH. A LITTLE CURLING AND BUMPING IS NOT A PROBLEM. THE PROJECTS YOU WILL BE DOING ALL REQUIRE SMALL PIECES OF PAPER; SO YOU WILL BE CUTTING AND TEARING THESE SHEETS AND GLUING THEM TO THINGS. THEN THEY WILL BE FLAT!