“I used to not worry too much about carrying around wet paintings. I’d snicker a little at all the oil painters trying to be so careful not to end up wearing their buttery colors from their fresh plein air paintings. As for me, I’d just toss mine in the back of the car, and if it landed on its face, it was ok. I’m an acrylic painter. I could get away with that…well, could get away with that…not so much anymore. With experience, and lots of wasted dried up paint, I found the slow drying acrylics to be much friendlier to my plein air adventures. With this friendly new medium, however, I had to think twice before tossing my painting around. So, I found myself researching wet panel carriers.”There’s a whole market of different styles of wet panel carriers out there. I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to test out one of these. It’s called the “Art Cocoon”, a panel carrier designed to cocoon around your wet painting. It was designed by an artist for an artist and is made of a high quality, very stiff and durable cardboard. Your standard sized panel fits into the cocoon and is held in place by a few small strips of tape on the back of the panel. Then, the lid (another cardboard panel with matching space for your panel size) sandwiches your fixed panel. A large rubber band goes around the whole set-up, keeping it sealed. Now, your painting is cocooned.
I wanted to test just how tough this little thing was, so I strapped it to my kayak and headed up the New River in Ashe Co., NC. Luckily, my cocoon came with a sealable bag…which was good for the wet kayak trip, and just my luck…rain! I was pleased when I took the cocoon out and the only thing wet was the outside of the bag! Also, the tie down straps on the kayak didn’t affect its solid exterior, which was pleasing.
“One other thing I noticed and was pleased with, was that even though I had the cocoon in wet weather (although under an umbrella, and sealed when traveling) I didn’t notice any type of adverse effects on the cardboard material. However, I might not have had the same experience had I dropped the panel in the river. But I don’t know…maybe I’ll try that next time and see how well it floats…but only if it’s a bad painting.”
—Jeremy Sams, Landscape painter, Archdale, NC, 9/8/15