I started this painting with a concept. I wanted to combine natural rocks with petroglyphs (rock carvings) with an Asian look. Here's a quick sketch of my idea.
Next I added rice paper and gesso to the top, and applied gesso to the rest of the paper, using a handmade tool (notched credit card) to create a flowing water effect. Some of the underpainting is revealed in this process.
At this point I have peeled the contact paper off, and painted more structure to the rocks and just cutout construction paper squares to get a better idea of how it would all work out.