I had so much fun making the "Eos kidnaps Tithonus" panel I decided I had better make a series of brooches. The red-figure and black figure imagery has always fascinated me -and I enjoy researching the stories. It has always surprised me that the Celts did not to this kaind of narative imagery.
Here is Cassandra in her various stages. This brooch is 2" wide. At this stage, I had already fired the piece four times (two coats of black on the front, and two coats on the back)
This is the first stencil with a sifted layer of opalescent white fines (fines are the smallest grains of enamel that are usually used for painting.)
Then I scratched through the sifted layer with a toothpick to create the details.
This is what it looked like after firing. It gives me an outline to guide my painting, and minimizing the problems of firing paint over regular enamel by giving me a base of fired fines.
By 'paint' I don't mean regular paint - but enamel paint: enamel that is ground up very fine and suspended in an oil medium (also known as china paint)
Then I painted the clothing and sifted a layer of mixed red/purple fines over it while it was still wet, dried it and again scratched through the layer for detail. I then painted the white skin, dried it and scratched the details also.
There is always some cracking when you fire fines over regularly fired enamel, due to different coefficients of expansion. Here there was only one crack in the white, and fortunately it was in a place that it was going to be hidden anyway. However I will have to learn to live with cracks, and hope that they always appear in artistic places!
I painted her hair in, and did another fire
And the ANOTHER fire after I decided (with a little help from my friends) to add the letters of her name. Click here to read her story
Here she is done as black-figure, and as a necklace
I didn't think the black figure worked so well with this design, as the black on black hair and robes are a little hard to discern.
Helen, on the other hand, worked out better (Sorry I don't have a pic of her red-figure alter-ego - it got a little over-fired ;-) See her story here
Dionysus turned out pretty good both ways ;-) You can read about him here
More to come!