Top 10 Reasons to Ditch Big Canvases

Painting Small

New to small painting, or just enjoy making pretty art? Well then, here’s a fun and free, bite-sized painting lesson you’ll love! Did we mention it’s FREE?

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Small Canvas Painting Is the Way to Go

10. No more worrying about space! Moving small canvases, packing them, transporting them, and mailing them all becomes infinitely easier when you are dealing with something that measures 4×6 inches.

9. Have you ever been at the point of sale with a prospective buyer and they hesitate, mostly because they are eyeing the work and thinking, “How am I going to get it home? Will it fit above the sofa?” Small canvas paintings are an easy buy for people because they don’t have to arrange transportation and there is always space for it in someone’s house.

8. Don’t have the palatial studio with wall to wall windows and luxurious, well, everything? Yeah, us neither. Big canvases need big space, and that’s not reality for a lot of us. Working small means you can actually work–and have room to live in the case where you create your art at home.

Snorkler by James Bereswill. A credit card or metro card is a perfect "canvas" for a mini painting.
Snorkler by James Bereswill. A credit card or metro card is a perfect “canvas” for a mini painting.

7. As one of our editors said, “I buy small-scale art because it is what I can afford.” Making a small canvas painting can be an investment into a new clientele.

6. Want to rearrange your studio? With small canvases you can reorganize quickly and easily and without the chance of hurting yourself lugging oversized canvases and stretchers.

I couldn't resist! I love this little giraffe and the cuteness of it speaks to the power of mini things--including and especially art!
I couldn’t resist! I love this little giraffe and the cuteness of it speaks to the power of mini things–including and especially art!

5. More options, less investment. Some paintings take as many as 50 hours to create. That is a lot of time. Painting small canvas paintings allows you to execute work quicker than that but with the same payoff–finished work that is ready to go on exhibit or find a home with a collector.

4. You are so on trend! Think of the Tiny House Movement. Chihuahuas. That miniature giraffe from the Direct TV commercial. The re-surging interest in all things miniature is at an all time high, so why not join in? It’s an amazing conversation piece…though not as good as if you had an actual miniature giraffe.

3. If you have a daily painting practice, this is a great way to keep to your goal but not get overwhelmed. All the same art principles apply but you get to your last stroke so much quicker, learning faster because you see the painting process all the way through in a much shorter amount of time.

2. I am a believer that if an artist gives a gift, it should be art. I would be offended otherwise. With miniature works, you can hold true to leading with your art but it is not as hard to let it go–and that goes for donating work too or commissions that might not come from uber-wealthy clients that you would do if the works were on the small scale.

Small canvas painting can have so much visual weight--especially when framed correctly and displayed as a showcase item. It takes on the feel of a collectible.
Small canvas paintings can have so much visual weight–especially when framed correctly and displayed as a showcase item. It takes on the feel of a collectible.

1. Little easels are the cutest! And sitting on top of your desk–or the desk of a loved one–so people can see your skills as a miniaturist? Get ready for the small-scale commissions to flood in! These are highly collectible, which is exactly what you want to be, too, artist!

Think Big Paint SmallFor more on working on the small-scale, check out Joyce Washor’s Think Big Paint Small. It shows you everything you want to know about working in miniature, and gives you a dozen step-by-step exercises to get there. Enjoy!

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Download a FREE step-by-step painting demonstration from Joyce Washor’s Think Big Paint Small to start making tiny-but-mighty art today! 

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P.S. Here’s a preview of the book to show you how the process of painting small goes–easier, faster, better!

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Artist Daily Blog
Courtney Jordan

About Courtney Jordan

  Courtney is the editor of Artist Daily. For her, art is one of life’s essentials and a career mainstay. She’s pursued academic studies of the Old Masters of Spain and Italy as well as museum curatorial experience, writing and reporting on arts and culture as a magazine staffer, and acquiring and editing architecture and cultural history books. She hopes to recommit herself to more studio time, too, working in mixed media.   

3 thoughts on “Top 10 Reasons to Ditch Big Canvases

  1. Hello Courtney.

    Good article for smaller canvases.

    When I read the title “…reasons to ditch big canvases”, I felt challenged for what I love doing.
    Your article made me realize why I do art in the first place.
    I love working in the large, regardless for all the reasons given for a small.
    I do it for the love of it, regardless of the consequences.

    For that, I thank you for revitalizing my purpose in art – for the love of it.

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