Working with Baltic Birch Plywood

There’s a strange atmosphere you get when a veil of cloud is just deep enough to obscure the sunset, yet turn everything blue in the early evening. Golden Strand, Dogurt. Oil painting 492mm x 380mm

This year I’ve been developing my own prepared wood panels for my paintings. After a lot of research and experimentation, (thank you Lathams – timber specialists), I’ve settled on higher grade 3mm 3 ply Baltic Birch (low formaldehyde). It’s a fine balance of weight and rigidity that works particularly well for working outdoors. I use 16mm solid core Baltic Birch for bracing the panel, it’s rigid and strong.

Previously I was using paper mounted on MDF panel and braced with a pine frame. I love painting on Fabriano Tela paper. This worked very well but the archival mediums I was using to mount were getting more costly and the process of making the panels was quite labour intensive. Moving from pine wood bracing to plywood has been great too – love plywood. There’s an exhibition on in London at the moment https://www.vam.ac.uk/exhibitions/plywood-material-of-the-modern-world.