The painter and his preparation

Whatever form the Thanka takes and for whatever reason it is commissioned, it is of the utmost importance that the works are prepared properly and with the greatest care. For if not, they will be of no benefit to the artist nor to the patron, whose devout intentions will be lost on an improper work of art. Traditionally it is said that an artist should possess certain characteristics: modest devotion to religion, soundness of all senses, diligence and a kindly disposition.

Thanka painting involves mastery of many demanding techniques

From the canvas preparation and drawing of the subject, through to the mixing and applying of colors, decorating with gold, and mounting the finished work in brocade, the creation of a Thanka painting involves skill and care at each stage and displays meticulous detail and exquisite artisanship.

-Mastery in sketching the illustrations and numerous deities according to formal iconography rules laid down by generations of Tibetan masters;

-Learning to grind and apply the paints, which are made from natural stone pigments;

-Learning to prepare and apply details in pure 24 crt. Gold.


-Prepare canvas


-Painting color

-Finishing the face & adding gold

Thanka painting requires extended concentration, attention to detail, and knowledge of Buddhist philosophy, and must be carried out in a peaceful environment.