Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Tuesday Tutorial --- China Painting

Out guest artist today is Joann Wheeler from Painted Panache.

A Work In Progress --- China Painting

                                     Inspiration Piece

So people always ask me how I do this. This time I took some pictures at each stage. Each piece of china is painted and fired in a kiln to a temperature of 1800 degrees multiple times. Here's some pictures of how it progresses:
                                       Blank China
The paints used are powdered paint pigments, mixed with oil for a painting medium.  Some people buy special mixtures of oils, however, you can use anything from mineral oil to motor oil!

Brushes used are very soft.  Unlike other types of painting very little paint is loaded on the brush. Your brush "kisses" the porcelain as you paint.
                              Design Sketched In

Each piece is painted multiple times as you build up your color from light to dark. There is no white on the palette, the white seen is actually the porcelain showing through. At each firing the glaze opens up and the paint goes into the glaze. As it cools the glaze closes and the paints become permanent. They will never wash off. They are dishwasher & microwave safe.

                                       The First Painting and Firing
The only exception to this is if the porcelain artist uses gold or lusters on the piece. Gold is actually 24kt. liquid gold. When fired it doesn't go into the glaze. It sits on top of the glaze.

                               Second Painting and Firing

Lusters like mother of pearl also sit on the top of the glaze. For that reason should you have gold or lusters, handwashing is advised.  Gold should never be put into the microwave as it is a metal and might give you a fireworks show!

                            Third Painting and Firing

So, if you are interested in porcelain art (a gift to treasure for generations to come), please visit the porcelain section of my Etsy shop:


  1. Excellent tutorial. I always wondered how that was done. Thanks gals!

  2. Joann,
    I have always loved your work and seeing how you do it was a special treat. I really enjoyed your tutorial. Thanks so much for sharing.


  3. I have visited your blog for the first time and found it a well organized blog. Keep sharing nice
    stuff. chinese paintings.....

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