Heather Tailor Porcelain Artist

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The first photo below shows the planning stage. The designs are drawn onto the oval porcelain medallions and Garnet and Lapis Lazuli gems selected to feature within the design.    The next stage is to cut the designs out of sheets of decal.   Cobalt Blue decal was used for the Lapis pieces, satin metallic gold decal for the bird and an etched design for the Garnet piece.

Second photo (below) shows the medallions with the decal fired on.








 The next stage is to outline the designs with raised paste.  I used Texture Paste for this purpose; mixing the powder into a pliable paste and loading it into a disposable syringe with a short snapped off needle, then laying a thin line of the paste aound the design areas and also outlining where the gems would be set on some of the pieces.

The photo below shows the pieces after firing the Texture Paste line work.

The fourth stage lustre and gold are added to the background.   For the Lapis pieces I used Liquid Bright Gold and for the Garnet pieces, Ruby Red Lustre.  

Photo below shows the lustre and gold being applied to both the front and back of the pieces.  The pieces have been placed on scrunched up plastic wrap to make a pleasing design in the wet lustre and gold on the backs. The wrap has also been pressed over the wet liquid bright gold on the piece top left.    

Below the fired results of the first application of lustre and gold. Most of the pieces needed a second application touch up. 


After completion, the Garnets and Lapis Lazuli were set onto each piece.  I use a Clear Epoxy (2 part mix) glue for this purpose.   Gems were glued over the holes of the pendant medallions designated to be brooches. 


Photos below show the finished pieces. 





The theme of the WA Guild of China Painter's 2011 exhibition was 'Movement' and as my subject I chose windblown poppies and below shows the progress of some of the pieces as they were being created.   The original designs came from sketches of Flanders poppies from my garden, then they were drawn onto various pieces of porcelain in sweeping curves using a fine markerpen.     I planned to outline the poppies and stems with fine lines of Texture Paste extruded through a syringe and after firing, paint them in Ruby Red lustre, however I had no idea what this may look like therefore I decided to start with the large oblong platter and a 6" vase.                       


After the Texture Paste lines had been fired onto the platter and vase at 820C, I painted each poppy with the red lustre and fired to 720C.  


Although  I diluted the Ruby Red lustre with a lot of lustre thinning oil, the red lustre fired a very strong red and at this stage I thought about painting the entire background black !   However, decided to make the background red and this time I added even more lustre thinner and really dragged it across the piece in long swirling lines, rubbing some off with my finger and also removing any lustre that went onto the already red poppies.  When the red lustre was dry, I painted in the gold work over the top.  (Red lustre contains a lot of gold therefore it is possible to add gold on top before firing)   The photo below to the left, shows the 4th firing and on the far right the finished plate with some of the bright gold painted over with Blue lustre to add some contrast. 







 Now that I could see the results of my experiment, I decided to go ahead and apply the Ruby Red lustre to the 11" tall vase, this time making sure the colour graduated from light at the bottom to a very deep red at the top.

Photos on the left show the front and back of the vase.  The panels down the sides are strips of patterned etched decal. These will be painted over with bright gold.

The photo below shows the finished vase after all the gold had been added.









For the next piece, a 6" rectangular jewel box,  I decided to introduce some MATT BLACK, using a sheet of matt black decal purchased from Held of Harrogate, UK.   This was fired on first then the Texture Paste lines added.  After firing, the poppies were painted with Ruby Red lustre and the entire background blocked in with Liquid Bright Gold.  To finish the piece off, a coat of Mother of Pearl lustre was applied over the fired gold.

The final piece in the series was a 6" flat square vase and as I liked the contrast of the matt black against the irridescent gold, this vase was painted in just black and gold. I called this piece 'Dancing in the moonlight'.  (picture below)













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