Materials for Minhwa – Mikehyojan

As I mentioned in last week’s blog, I will introduce materials that are needed to draw my Minhwa paintings. But I want to remind you that there are more materials used for Minhwa than what I have as shown below.

First material is Korean traditional paper called Hanji. It is “composed of the inner bark of the Mulberry tree and can last over 1000 years.” From this blog, you can also explore the process of making Hanji and the various usage of it. I brought two different sizes to draw two types of paintings. Hanji on the left is to draw the one that I posted in the first blog and the top Hanji is to draw a flower.

Next is Korean powders called Bunchae that are created from minerals. I brought twelve essential powders and labeled them in Korean to easily distinguish their colors. With the knife next to it, I carry certain pieces into the small dish and crush them until they are small enough to be mixed with water. For the dish that I make the color in, I brought one that is a Korean traditional shape, a six-petal flower, that is useful for me to create adequate and various amounts of colors.

Third is paint tubes called Bongchae that add some strength on color. I use Bunchae more often than Bongchae, however, because Bunchae creates more unique color from minerals. I sometimes mix both Bunchae and Bongchae in creating various color as well.

Fourth material is Korean brush. To categorize into three types, first brush can be thin one for drawing the outline with ink. Another one is thick enough to paint the color. Last, the right end brush is the thickest, used for an effect of gradation, altering the changes in light and color to make the painting more realistic.

Fifth is four small bottles. From the top is water. Under the water bottle is a white liquid glue called Binder. Next is liquid glue called Agyo. I use two droplets of both liquid glues every time I create a color to prevent my color spreading over the outline on Hanji. The last bottom bottle composes ink mainly used for outlining.

Sixth material is a thick silk on the right end of my picture that I place underneath the Hanji when I draw to prevent the Hanji from ripping and being unstable.

This week, I talked with Teacher Betsy and Teacher Joyce. Teacher Betsy helped me search for helpful books related to Korean traditional folk paintings. She borrowed four books and I received them on Friday. I am excited to look over those books for useful resources as there are not many on the internet as Minhwa is Korean painting. I also had a great conversation with Teacher Joyce, comparing Korean, Chinese, and Japanese traditional paintings. It gave me an idea to explore for next week’s blog. I was glad to hear that she was enjoying reading my blogs.


Citation: “Hanji (Korean Paper) – a Traditional Art Form with a Multitude of Modern Uses.”Korean Paper – Hanji,

2 thoughts on “Materials for Minhwa – Mikehyojan

  1. Joyce Nagata

    I’m excited to see you begin the process and want to come watch up close when you are ready for visitors! The paint mixing process is particularly interesting.

  2. kevinwang11

    I have been following your blog posts for weeks. I feel that I have learned a lot about the materials you will use to paint your Minhwa. I also hope that you can get some inspiration from the books T. Betsy lend you. Looking forward to seeing your Minhwa!



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