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Drawing Lotus Flowers in the Tibetan Tradition: Thangka Art Series


In this evening workshop you will learn  how to draw a Lotus Flower according to the Tibetan Buddhist Thangka tradition.


The lotus flower (Skt. Pad Ma, Tib. Pema) was not only adopted as a sacred symbol in India and Tibet, but also in Persia, Egypt, China, and Central Asia. And in all these countries it is seen as a symbol of beautyperfection and spiritual purity and spiritual awakening.

Many aspects of the Buddhist path are captured in the Lotus: it grows from the mud (samsara), but as it is unstained by that it appears clean on the surface (purification), and in the end produces a beautiful flower (enlightenment).


Lotus Flowers are a symbol of both compassion and the highest state of consciousness, that’s why many Buddhas hold a Lotus flower in their hands, such as White Tara, Female Buddha of Longevity, May 24-26. Another famous Buddha was born from a lotus, hence the name Padma-Sambhava (‘Lotus-Born’), May 31-June 2 

Besides the drawing session, this workshop contains a short meditation and a presentation on the symbolism of the lotus flower in Tibetan art. There is individual guidance and a lot of room for questions.

Drawing experience is not needed!

The use of materials is included, but you are welcome to bring your favorite art materials as well.
Also bring some slippers or thick socks to wear.

NOTE: Other tibetan art courses during this year’s tour: Buddha Face, May 23,

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Carmen Mensink is a painter & teacher of Tibetan Buddhist Art.

Carmen was born in The Netherlands (Zwolle, 1972) and is based in Amsterdam. After her graduation as graphic designer at the Royal Academy of Art she worked for many years in design and advertising agencies.

From an early age on Carmen was interested in Buddhism, and after she became a Buddhist practitioner, she met her thangka painter teacher, the well-known Andy Weber. Captivated by the rich tradition and detailed craftsmanship of these Tibetan Buddhist paintings she started with him her many years of training, thirteen in total.

As is tradition within a thangka lineage, the teacher points out his successor(s), and in 2003 Andy told Carmen that it now was time for her to start teaching. It was something she never saw coming but took on with much love, passion and dedication. So in the beginning, when she was still working as a graphic designer, she started offering thangka classes in Amsterdam, which slowly expanded.

From 2008 on Carmen paints and teaches the art of thangka full time and travels around the world for it -her classes and lectures can be joined in Europe, the United States and in Asia, where she and offers them at universities, museums and Buddhist centers. An overview of venues can be found here. Carmen also offers private thangka teachings as well as thangka restoration services, and she can paint your Buddha statues according to tradition.

Besides painting and teaching, some of Carmen’s other passions include traveling & photography, theatre and acting (she once played as an extra in a Bollywood movie!)

Carmen can be contacted through her contact page.