Monday, March 23, 2009

A crazy bowl , a bejewelled bird ..and 30 bottles of paint in a shoebox

Recently I was reading this post from Once Upon a Tea Time and took an instant flight down memory lane...
Joe is known to be the creative guy in the family .. and me, I could hardly draw a straight-line. I had never tried my hand on any arts or crafts till my marriage..and just went on with my notion that "it-is-not-my-thing". However, after we got married and I got here..we were on the lookout for new apartments to rent . After seeing any apartment ( most of them would be empty at the time), Joe would come back home and make me a sketch on how each room would be like , once we furnished it . I was so impressed by his artistry.. also feeling a tad disappointed that I couldn't impress him with anything of that sort.

Around this time we got a flier about the various classes offered by the city.. and ever-so-enthusiastically I enrolled myself for a class on "Ceramic Painting". Being the,sweetest guy that he can be, Joe wanted to go with me for the class an we ended up taking the class together. While the rest of us were trying to negotiate the basic techniques of painting bamboo shoots or flowers, Joe was busy trying to impress the teacher with his "brush-less painting"( he would just put a blob of paint on the tile and then jut keep tilting it till it made a design). Unfortunately I don't have any pictures of those ..I would have loved to share it here.
Anyway.. the end of the story is that.. I finally learned a craft. I was so thrilled .. I was painting on everything i could lay my hands on.. tiles, cups, plates any glazed surface at home was subject to my artistic explorations :)
This is a a crazy-bowl I painted.It was a little bit more difficult than I had imagined because of the curved surface; you can see that some of the paint has puddled in the center.

Below, is one of our better creations. It is the depiction of a Byzantine bird on a 12"X12" floor tile. It took almost an entire day for both of us to do this ..from making the stencil to adding the multiple layers of paint. The copper tones border is actually layers and layers of thinned down paint applied and dried using a hair-dryer to get the smooth eggshell effect.The inspiration picture is from one of the tile decorating books. We are yet to figure out a way to showcase this .. if you have any suggestions please feel free to comment.

A little bit on the paint used: We have used Pebeo 150 , a non-toxic water-based paint for all the ceramic and glass painting. After the paint is dried, you just set it in the oven for 30 min in 300F and the artwork stays permanent on the surface.


  1. oh how nice!! Aswathy.. I'll have to try this one.. I've never tried painting on ceramics... Have you done any fabric painting... thats fun as well!!

  2. hey patty, ceramic painting is real easy .. you can turn any mess into an instant artwork.. i have never tried fabric painting ..i love fabric a little too much to take the risk and ruin them.. but i do quilt... i used to be a very passionate quilter till my boy came along. hope to pick it up sometime again soon :)

  3. Aswathy,
    That is a beautiful bowl! if you ever make another one, I will buy it! The bird is lovely. I was heavily into porcelain painting at one time but gave it up because the picture in my head and that on the plate never matched :)). Have you framed the bird or is that the tile border?

  4. Thanks Aditi, I am much flattered. As, i said before , just pour some paint and play around :)... if i make another one i would gladly gift it to you for inspiring this post.
    We are yet to figure out how to frame the bird. the copper border is hand-painted..and was the toughest part..layers and layers of thinned down paint ..each layer applied and then dried with a hair dryer before the next one went on. Glad you like them !
    If you are really interested..let me know i can let u know some basic techniques on ceramic painting (whetever i learn in the class)

  5. Aswathy ,My bday is on Nov 1st.Hope u understood what I meant :)


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