Gesso is such a critical part of art journaling. It allows us to alter the paper we smear it on to be able to accept extremely wet and heavy media that the paper would normally buckle under. It also allows us to extend our paint. Try smearing equal portions of paint on a regular piece of paper and then on a gessoed and dried piece of paper.
Gesso does so much more, though!
Mix acrylic paint with gesso to create a muted color of the acrylic and it will also have the properties of gesso. For instance, adding red acrylic paint to white gesso will create a pale red gesso.
Acrylic paint is not the only thing you can add to gesso! Dry glitter added to clear (or white or black, really) gesso creates a sparkly base layer that is both visually appealing and ready to accept more layers on top of it! Clear gesso with gitter in it is made to put Distress Ink on top of it! The translucent Distress Ink colors don’t obscure the glitter and gives the page a new color without obscuring the patterns that lie underneath the gesso.
So, now that you know that gesso is more than white goo, go and experiment and play and tell me if you found something FABULOUS to do with gesso!