Zen drawing on a Buddha board

I had never heard of it before until I got a  Buddha board as a present from my uncle. It was very nicely packed in a box together with a tiny pencil. I was attracted to it strait away even I had no idea how it worked.

buddha board

Funnily enough it had been lying next to my book about Zen drawing in a Dutch museum shop! I understand why; the board is perfect for using in a zen drawing practice. You paint with water, and as it dries up, the result disappears.  Depending on the temperature and amount of water you use, this happens in several minutes, sometimes already before you finished your drawing. It forces you to paint quickly and be relaxed about ‘failures’ and mistakes.

buddha board (2)buddha board 2

Now you would say this board is perfect for children too. The thing is however that the board is quite vulnerable, and within a few minutes of exposure to my daugther and friends it had suffered severely from well meant experimental try outs like painting with real watercolor and using tons of water. The white coating doesn’t like both, and as you can see there are already permanent stains and ‘bubbles’ like this:

board buddha

I think this should be improved as kids love to use it. Here is a piece of art by Leah 8 years old:

drawing boardchildren drawing

The Buddha board is available in several colors and the color of the box will be the color of your art. I prefer black. It looks just like an Asian piece of art on rice paper. Speaking of which; I have just opened a new shop on Etsy with Black ink/ watercolors by the name Zen Inks.

tiger zen painting


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