3 Reasons Why My Best Concepts Exist on Cheap Canvas

As you get to know me, (or if you already know me), it becomes evident that I get a kick out of frugal living. I enjoy finding life hacks that save me cash, or save the environment from accumulating more garbage. If I can accomplish both at once, I will have a smile on my face to last all day.

To save on production costs, I enjoy making my own art canvas. I have the advantage of tools and a space to do the work- so this definitely helps me to carry out my artistic passions.

I call it my “cheap canvas” because I am able to spend less money on materials than the cost of buying a similar size of canvas at the art store. When I create artwork on my cheap canvas, I am surprised by the results I arrive at. I believe that…

My best concepts as an artist exist on cheap canvas, and here are my three reasons…

Cheap canvas can take a beating.

I source high quality cotton canvas with an 8oz- 10oz thread weight for my canvas. I buy meters of the stuff with my Fabricland membership when there is a sale. It is so sturdy, and when applied with gesso from De Serres Art Store, the art canvas becomes resistant to everything. I can leave a wet field of paint to dry on the surface for many hours, with reapplication, and there will be no leaking through the canvas.


blue gold and turqoise painting with reflective shimmering effects
Bliss gold and blue painting by Stephanie Konu

I am more apt to experiment on cheap canvas with art concepts I have been thinking about.

I think that creativity blooms when money is no object. Obviously that is not the reality most of us live in; but I also think that dreamers are meant to have tall aspirations for the world to be inspired by. When I create my own art materials, I think that I am reaching a compromise between ideals. I can paint things that are pure experimentation yet, are at risk of failing- but the risk is mitigated by saving costs/ being resourceful.

Luckily for me, my failures are simply the bricks that will build my palace of success.

No fear of failure

If you take a risk that ends in failure, and you cannot live with the failure staring back at you while sipping your morning coffee (having a laugh here!), you can relax! We are only talking about cheap canvas!

Canvas is what? A fabric material that has been stapled to a wood frame, with some primer painted on. At the end of the day, you can always pry the staples off, peel away the canvas, and start the process over again!

The beauty of using cheap canvas is that I am never overly “attached” to any concept that I paint. Nothing is truly lost, except the time it takes to start the project over. However, can the time truly be calculated as a loss when it was spent refining one’s skill as an artist?



I love using inexpensive materials in my artistic practice. What money or time saving strategies do you use? Leave your comments in the section below, and thank you for stopping by.



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s