Saturday, June 23, 2012

Monet Spoon Rest (Painted and Baked Tile)

I painted this tile (inspired by Monet's Japanese Bridge over Water Lilies) and am using it as a spoon rest near my stove.  It needs some felt pads on the bottom, which I plan to put on this week. 

If you'd like to make one, it's quite simple.  

You need: 

one blank 4x4 white tile   (or get a few; they're cheap and you will get hooked on this project!)
assorted acrylic paint tubes (smallest ones) in white, grey, yellow, green, blue, and magenta
small, flat paintbrush
paper towel
cover for table surface
smock or old shirt you don't mind getting paint on (acrylic is hard to wash out of fabric)
felt square (4x4) 
Elmer's glue

I started with the trees by mixing blues and yellows first to make various greens. (You can buy greens if you'd prefer.) . Better yet, use  the impressionists'  method of visually mixing colors by placing them side by side with dashes and dots. That is, magenta next to blue will appear purple. Green next to yellow will "read" as yellow green. 

Don't make any judgments on your piece as you go. It will turn out beautifully. 

After I did the trees, I worked on the water and the lilies. Look closely: there are no "real" lilies or other flowers. The dashes of color only give the "impression" of flowers on the water and banks of the stream. 

Next, paint the sun. Again, it's just dashes of color, not a sun "shape," per se.  If  you are trying to convey and earlier time of day,  make the sun area broader and lighter.  You can lighten by using a lighter shade of the same color, or add white to the yellow first, although doing so can sometimes "muddy" the effect. I prefer to use various shades of color side by side.

When the background is dry (in less than a half hour, usually) , paint the bridge. 

In the upper third of the tile, paint three grey arcs, equally spaced.  Then paint grey vertical bars on the bridge,  Then paint a thin white line to the left of each of those grey space bars. (It's okay if the grey mixes with the white a bit.) It makes the space bars appear to glisten in the sun. 

When the whole thing is dry, sign and date your piece with a fine black Sharpie. 

Once you are satisfied with the painting, it's time to bake the tile. It must be baked in order to seal the color. Otherwise, the color will come right off. 

Here's what to remember: COOL HOT COOL

2. Heat it to 350 degrees. 
3. Bake for 30 minutes.  
4. Turn oven off but leave tile in there and don't touch it!!!

To use it as a spoon rest or coaster, be sure to glue a big square of felt or felt  pads on the bottom side. 
Tile will scratch things so keep it away from glass  or porcelain cooktops and wood furniture until you've put the pads on it. 


Acrylic is very forgiving, which I love. It mixes easily, wipes easily off when wet, can be painted over when dry (if you don't like the color after it's dry), it washes off brushes with soap and water, it's inexpensive, comes in a vast array of color, and gives a more pleasing result than tempera. (If you're working with kids under age 6, tempera is fine, but it has a dull appearance by comparison.)  I have found that kids love the "professional" looking result (ie shiny and not "schoolish") and thus feel that much prouder of their art.


Danielle said...

Very nice! What a fun project. I love tiles, you can do so much with them! I've used stamps and ink to make coasters.

Laurie said...

Oh how pretty! I love this! Tab and the grandkids (baby, 4 and 5 yr. olds.) are coming for 6 weeks and I'm not sure if time will speed by or we'll be wondering what to do (or wondering what Grammy is up to doing) OR if we'll be "baby bound" in a good way!. Anyway- We have some ideas (like mosaics! (Oh the mess!) But art can be messy, which makes it fun! SO- We'll make some mess… Please come to KS to instruct us through fun and messy art projects!!!!!!

Susan Kane said...

What a great idea! I will do this with my granddaughters!

I have small bottles of acrylic paint for use on glass and tile. Wondering if these would be okay?

Have loads of left over tiles from some other projects.

thanks for such a neat idea!

Anonymous said...

Love it!! It turned out great. I have been planning on doing something like this for awhile, but haven't gotten around to buying the materials. Need to get on it. I can see how you can get hooked on it too. This would be make great gifts.

Zoanna said...

Thanks, everyone. It wss fun and easy. Danielle, I remember your stamped coasters. Really well done!
Laurie, I would LOVE to come to KS to see you and meet your grandcuties and do some messy art. I'm jealous that my parents are going in July to Sterling w/o me! Waaa. Susan, you could certainly use those little bottles of acrylic. Only one caveat is try not to mix brands as they are each made slightly different by manufacturers and react slightly different when mixed w/ other brands. Joyce, These are gift that are easy to personalize. And you can make several in one afternoon.

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