Cardboard as Canvas

I’m always keen on finding new things to paint on (other than canvas – I must be mentally allergic to canvas, because I seem to go out of my way to avoid painting on it!). In first year at uni, we were only allowed to paint on cardboard, which was actually fantastic. No pressure caused by worrying about mucking up the surface you’re painting on – cardboard is cheap, easy to get, and it’s a great way to make something beautiful out of those old boxes that seem to accumulate in the garage. They have a beautiful aesthetic quality too, makes it easy to paint on. I think the warm tone of the cardboard is a lot less intimidating than starting on something starkly white.

So, without further ado… here are some amazing examples I’ve found of fantastic cardboard art:


I found this image on the Mint Design Blog, photographs from the writer’s trip to Musee de la Chasse et de la Nature. This particular artwork is apparently carved entirely out of cardboard.

I could imaging utilising something similar to bring dimension and depth in a new way to a flat painting. I am a painter at heart, I think, but I love the idea of incorporating little mixed-media touches, 3D elements, digital elements… I like the idea of combining.


These works by Berni Valenta are another fascinating example of using the texture, shape and colour inherent in cardboard to create comical characters.

I love how EVOL here has used the cardboard in such a clever way. Similar to Valenta, he’s utilised the cardboard’s natural features, but this time in such a way that I honestly had to take a second look to see if it was real (a photograph of an actual building) or not.

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