Special Effects

Skill Development

Shivananda’s fourth tutorial: coloured ink, kitchen towel and sponge cloths

In session 1 we saw how to create an interesting background with acrylic colours on a canvas and, in session 2, how a mountain range using a torn newspaper as a mask could be added. Now the work on this canvas continues.

First Shivananda explains how we can take care of our favourite brushes. Important: don’t let brushes lie around with acrylic paint on them (leave them resting in water while you take a break, rinse out and dry well when finished and do not to store them standing upright in a jar).

Looking at the painting with the Swiss mountains, Shivananda sees that the white area is too glary and clashes with the red background. He opts to paint over it with yellow ink (using his favourite Rohrer & Klingner). The ink will not cover the details previously created with the paper-wrinkle technique and the warmer hue will integrate better with the sky.

It now shows that the vast expanse of the red sky doesn’t look so very interesting. Shivananda covers it up with golden paint and it seems he is going to ‘destroy’ the paining. Next step is the kitchen roll! You might not have noticed in how many different patterns kitchen rolls come. Once you start using this technique you will look more closely and collect the best! Shivananda’s kitchen roll has a heart pattern and this is now transferred to the sky while rolling it over the still wet gold area. Equally interesting are the patterns on sponge cloths which are used in the lower parts of the sky.

When you come to the point where you feel, ‘Oh my god, I have destroyed my painting!’ this is usually a very good point, because it is an opportunity for you to let go!”


Watch the previous session (and all upcoming sessions) by following this link.

The video was filmed by Govinda (Guy-Claude Sthioul) in the location where Shivananda’s painting workshops take place every year (from May till September): Alexis Zorbas in Corfu. Greece.


ShivanandaShivananda was born in Switzerland. He worked as a trained typesetter and graphic designer, silkscreen printer, bookbinder and photographer. Twenty years ago he fully engaged himself as a painter, working in Brazil and Switzerland. Music, another expression of his creativity, has been his companion for all his life. He plays the guitar and sings. In summer he lives in Arillas on the Greek island Corfu, where he facilitates painting and singing workshops.


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