Does anyone have experience of painting on ceramic tiles? We recently bought some second-hand fireplace tiles on eBay, a floral design which I thought was going to be highlighted in red. Unfortunately it’s difficult to show colour on a computer screen and in real life the bits I thought were red are actually brown. I like the yellow, and the background is a lovely deep bottle-green. But brown is probably my least-favourite colour. I’m wondering if it would work to use a ceramic paint to highlight the brown bits with a hint of red? They are fireplace tiles so I think the paint could be ‘fixed’ in the oven without cracking the tiles.
The reason I originally liked the tiles is that the ‘tube-lining’ that outlines the areas of colour reminds me of the white lines of a silk-painting, so I have an idea to make a silk painted picture to hang above the fireplace that echoes the flowers in the tiles. It’s a long time since I did silk-painting except to make mottled backgrounds for stitch. I did some last year when I made a silk painting of Jeremy Fisher sitting on his lily-leaf for my God-daughter. Unfortunately when I fixed the silk I must have got it too hot because the gutta outlining came out scorched. Although the scorch-marks could have been incorporated into the design I thought it would weaken the silk in the future, so I abandoned it and did the same design on cotton with fabric paints instead. It would be fun to get back into silk painting as it’s a lovely technique.
Projects like this have been on hold for a while. My mother-in-law was desperate to leave hospital, so we found her a place in a care home while bones mended. Sadly the care home wasn’t a great success and there was ‘much weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth’ (and that’s just the relatives!) There was a notice board in the entrance with the heading ‘Activities This Week’. The board was always empty. I was tempted to add ‘Abandon hope all ye who enter here’. My normally positive outlook only just withstood mother-in-law’s cheery reminders of ‘Not long til you’re old and in this state and who’ll look after you’? But I guess if you’re looking over The Edge then you can be forgiven for commenting to other people that it looks like a long way down. Anyway, at the weekend we effected ‘The Great Escape’ from the care home and took mother-in-law back home with a lovely live-in carer, so fingers crossed that things will look up for everyone. Perhaps we’ve left the twin towns of Much Weeping and Much Wailing behind and moved to Little Hoping. Maybe one day we can move on to Great Hoping?
Ah well, if you haven’t got youth, faith or children to protect you, then art provides some kind of hand-rail and fairy-lights along the edge of The Abyss. Art, and also the wonders of nature; moorland streams, secret mossy places, sunlit uplands, flowers, silence. And cuddles. And being connected to people. And old polished wood. And cats sleeping in the sun. And tiled fireplaces! So if anyone has any experience of ceramic painting then I’d be grateful for your thoughts. Do you think it would work?