Mixed media painting: Lotus Moon

Mixed media painting lotus moon

Art, people think, needs to be done on canvas – if you want to be taken seriously, that is. People tend to look at paintings on paper as “less than”. But why is that? Who made the rules here?

Canvas was the preferred medium at one point because of its archival quality. It lasted longer, it was easier to transport without tearing or damage. And it’s easier to hang up without the need for framing.

But art on paper is no less durable – you get excellent quality archival paper in various paper weights that you can use depending on your medium. It is much easier to transport than canvas – less weight, easier packaging, better portability. Depending on the size of the painting, you can frame it and hang it up on your walls or stick it into a frame and display it on a table or mantle place. And most importantly, it is easy to store, unlike canvas, which requires a lot of real estate.

Mixed media painting on paper: Lotus Moon

More than the substrate, I believe it is the painting itself that should be the primary focus for both artists and art lovers.

Take this painting, as an example. I created it on plain copy paper that I had used to create texture on another painting. It had a layer of gesso and some texture from the modling paste, which helped it to withstand the layers of paint.

A friend of mine saw the painting, fell in love with it, and purchased it from me. It mattered not one whit what the substrate was – what mattered was how the painting made him feel.

If you don’t have the space to store canvases, if you don’t have the resources to buy expensive supplies, you don’t have to! Paint on paper. Use cheaper paints. Buy a few colors that can be mixed together. Start small and slowly build your art supply stash. But don’t let arbitrary rules hold you back or make you question the worth of your work.

After all, weather you paint on canvas or on paper, the skills and the vision needed are the same!

At the end of the day, rules are often arbitrary and need to be questioned, and broken. Not just in the art world, but in any area of life!

Supply list

Mixed Media Painting: Lotus Moon

Camel gesso

Pebeo: Azo PinkCobalt Violet; Raw sienna; Yellow Ochre

Amsterdam: Titanium Buff

Camel: Permanent green light; emerald green; zinc white; gold; medium magenta

FW acrylic inks: Antelope brown; marine blue

Derwent Intense pencils

I hope you enjoyed this video. Do subscribe to my YouTube channel – I will be adding a new art video every 2nd and 4th Saturday!

P.S.: What’s your favorite rule to break? Tell me in the comments!

Posted in Art Journaling, Art tutorials.

I’m an artist and art educator, podcaster, tarot reader, and writer. I share my discoveries along the path to inspire you to live a more creative, soul-centered life. Receive my love letters for more of my musings on life and creativity. P.S. I love Instagram - join me there?


  1. I really enjoyed watching the process you took to paint this and it’s beautiful. Thank you and yes, I agree with you on the rules part.

    • Thank you, Masha! I’m getting really exasperated with some of the big name artists and their rules that I see floating around from time to time. I understand they are monetizing their workshops etc., but there is a way to do it without making already insecure artists even more insecure!

  2. I love the final picture but really how the way you’re showing the method behind it too. Gives hope to people like me to try… especially with concepts like this which are a bit hatke from what we expect


    • One of the reasons I decided to start a YouTube channel was to inspire people to try. I came to art around 5 years ago without any training and a history of trying art and giving up multiple times. If I can do it, I know anyone can. It’s just the matter of finding the right mindset {really} – everything else is only a matter of practice.

    • Thank you so much, Anamika! Hmm…I don’t remember exactly, I painted this in January! {And yes, this video has been lying with me since then!} But if I remember right, it was the work of an entire day {including time spent waiting for paint to dry}.

  3. It’s absolutely gorgeous. I am a huge fan of your texturing. Love the way you add layers. Indeed canvas is just one of the mediums to showcase creativity.

    • Thanks so much, Raj! I’ve started enjoying texturing a lot more these days. And yes, there are so many mediums to showcase creativity – all these ‘rules’ are only limiting.

  4. It was delightfully calming to see how your paper became a painting. I loved your technique and marvelled at the way your flower just grew.

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