Wednesday, November 28, 2012

painting on ceramics

i've been asked a lot lately about the paint i use to create my ceramic hand print and foot print pieces, so i thought i would do a post about it.  first let me say that this paint is not food safe.  if you paint on the outside of a mug or pitcher, then it would be fine to use.  But plates or platters would be decorative only.  now, yes, there are ceramics studios where you can go and get this done, where they would be food safe.  that is because they have the ability to seal the paint and then fire it in a kiln.  that is also why pieces from these places are usually very expensive.  if you are just looking for a keepsake item, then this paint offers you a much more affordable option.

ok...that being said...the paint i use is called porcelaine 150.


michaels is the only craft store i've ever found it at, but the quantities are usually limited.  i usually order mine from dick blick.  you have to work quickly with this paint, because it will dry fast.  if you have never done hand prints before, i might suggest doing a couple of practice ones with craft acrylic on paper first.  but essentially, you use a brush to spread the paint out evenly over the hand.  make sure it is coated well.  then press the hand straight down onto the plate, press down on the back of the hand and each of the fingers quickly, and then pull straight up. if you like the print, set it aside and let it dry.  if you don't like it, wipe it off quickly with a baby wipe or a wet paper towel.  just make sure the plate is completely dry before you try to reprint.  also, you should wash the paint off the hand completely and then re-coat with fresh paint before trying to do a second print or a reprint. once the print is dry, you can add more decorative painting or writing with a small brush or with a porcelaine 150 marker.  

this hand print christmas tree, one of my most favorite designs, would be a good one to start with because it uses a limited number of colors, and doesn't require a lot of painting to finish it.  



once you have it painted how you like it, set it somewhere safe to dry for at least 24 hours.  if you try to fire it too soon, the paint might end up bubbling.  once it is ready to fire, set it in a cool oven and close the door.  then set the oven to 300 degrees.  turn the timer on for 30 minutes.  when the timer goes off, turn the oven off, but do not open the oven door.  let the piece sit in the oven as the oven cools back down to room temperature gradually.  once you are sure the oven has cooled down completely, then open the door and take it out.  the paint is now permanent, and your keepsake is ready for you to enjoy!

and, just so you know, this paint can also be used on porcelain, terra cotta, metal and glass as well.

i'll be back next week with some more hand print christmas ideas!  you can subscribe to this blog on the sidebar over there, or follow me on facebook or twitter, where I also post my blog updates.  

here's to one-of-a-kind, handmade treasures (china can't make these!),

-julia




16 comments:

  1. LOVE it! Thank you Julie!!!
    You are an inspiration!

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  2. Hi! Your stuff is beautiful. Can you tell me what kind of black pen you use for the writing? Thank you!!

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    1. Hi Kristen. The pen is also the Porcelaine 150. They make a bullet shaped pen and a fine point one also. The "Christmas Blessings" is written with the bullet pen. I do all the painting and writing before I fire it in the oven. Give it a good 24 hours to dry completely before you bake it. Good luck!

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    2. Kristen, I tried to email this answer to you as well, but your email came up as "no reply." So I hope you check back for this answer!

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  3. Does it matter what kind of paint you use? I only have have finger paint and could I use a black sharpie to write my message?

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    1. Hi Brandi. Finger paint would not stay long term on a ceramic plate. This porcelaine 150 paint is really the only paint I've found that will stay permanently. If you just want something on there temporarily, then finger paint might work if you don't handle it at all once it is done. You could try it and see. If you don't like it, it should wash off the plate pretty easily. As far as the sharpie goes, it might work also, but it would probably fade and chip off easily. I have never tried sharpie on ceramics. Hope this helps. Good luck!

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  4. What about using Acrylic paint on ceramic? Do I have to bake the plate right after it dries or anytime before it's really handled? I'm asking because my oven is out of service at the moment but I still want to make these for Christmas.

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    1. Hi Lisa. I have never tried to use acrylic on ceramics, mainly because I feel pretty certain that it would not stay long term and would scratch off pretty easily. Even the Porcelaine ceramic paint will scratch off until it is fired in the oven. If you really want to use acrylic, I would suggest doing it on canvas. In this blog post here I wrote about some ideas for acrylic. http://jaeartworks.blogspot.com/2012/12/handprint-christmas-trees.html

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    2. If I was to try Acrylic, could I spray it with a clear coat of something to keep it from chipping without firing it?

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    3. All I can tell you is maybe. I have never used acrylic sealer either. I have heard of it though. The problem is that with the kind of ceramic plate we are talking about, it has already been fired with a glaze to intentionally KEEP things from sticking to it. My gut says the acrylic could possibly still chip off. However, if you were super careful with the plate and didn't rub on it, it might work. If you do try it, I hope you will let me know what you discover! BTW- I tried to send you these replies by email too, but you were listed as "no reply." Good luck!

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  5. HI, you art is absolutely beautiful. I just discover your blog and I am really amazed. I have 18 months old, and would like to do this for his grandparents Christmas gift. My only concern is the paint. How much toxic this 150 paint is to put on babes hands do you know ? Is there any safer paint to use for this purpose. Thank you

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  6. HI, Is there any chance I can make this with non toxic paint ?

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    1. Hi there. I am sooooo sorry this reply is late. I had a problem with my email, so I didn't see any of these questions until now! I don't know of any other paint that would be permanent on ceramics. You can use acrylic instead, but you would have to be very careful handling the item after. The paint would probably chip off very easily. if you really don't want to use the ceramic paint, I would suggest changing the item you are printing on. For example, you could do a similar design with acrylic on a canvas, the front of a photo album, on paper in a frame, etc. Good luck and sorry again about the late reply!

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  7. Hello! I was just wondering if these are dishwasher safe once they are fired in the oven. Thanks!

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    1. Hi Megan,
      The paint company says they are, but I don't personally recommend it. I choose to hand wash my stuff. And I never paint anywhere where food or drink will touch. Just my opinion. Sorry about the late reply. I had a problem with my email and didn't realize these comments were on here. Thanks for visiting!

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  8. We spray the plate with two light coats of clear sealer for our kindergarteners. The paint stays on o.k. unless it is immersed in water/dishwasher.

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