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One Fire Painting by Karla Pendleton

One Fire Painting by Karla Pendleton

Postby Cate » Tue Nov 20, 2012 10:23 pm

I've been doing one fire painting ever since someone told my mother (Betty Humphrey) that it couldn't be done. That was like waving a red flag in front of a bull. Actually, the truth is that Carlos Spina (who was an excellent one-fire artist) told Mother that one-fire designs couldn't be accomplished with an open medium, but somehow this was lost in translation. HA! Long story short, Mom developed an open medium which she could mix her paints with as well as condition her brush as she was painting, that would allow her to retain the color she needed for one-fire work. Many of you use it as a general purpose medium for mixing and painting multiple fires, she named it Art-Aide. It allows us to paint heavy and wet without fear of a run and helps to retain the color we need to avoid a second fire. Together Mom and I developed a line of paints that will also retain their color at a hot fire, 014 and above. The hot fire helps to reduce the risk of chipping when paint is applied heavily. Here's a link to my gallery photos, nearly every design is accomplished in one-fire.

http://khpendleton.homestead.com/Hand-P ... China.html

The sink shown on the first page of the gallery is two one-fire designs. In other words I couldn't fit this sink in the kiln if all sides of it were wet, something would touch the sides of the kiln. So I painted the bowl first...fired to 010, then painted the top of the sink where the faucets rest on a second fire again firing to 010. Each design was accomplished in one fire but I had to fire the sink itself twice. Sometimes I find it easier to handle a piece, like vases for instance if I fire one side before painting the other side, to avoid smearing. Obviously some pieces require multiple fires for different materials used, for example a border using burnish gold would need a cooler fire or a framing technique which required masking could not be accomplished until the design is fired. The magnolia and hummingbird tray which Paul Lewing graciously included in his last DVD, was an example of a one fire design, but it required two more fires to get the framing technique completed (involved webbing spray, china paint and gold).

I typically begin a one-fire design by laying in my main subject with very heavy paint, shape only no detail (use my finger for this job as it can carry more paint and lay it on faster than a brush). Next I lay in my darkest shadow areas with a large brush side loaded with lots of paint and medium. I load my brush more like an oil painter than a china painter. From this point I work from the background forward, using a combination of carving and wipeout work to add "foo-foo" to the background. After I have the background under control I generally place leaves, buds, stems, etc highlighting again with a wipe out technique. Finally I finish up with highlighting and detailing the main subjects, again using a wipe out technique. So with me it's put the paint on then take the paint off, which drives some frugal souls absolutely nuts! There are as many ways to accomplish a one-fire design as there are one-fire artists. Take a stab at it, start simple, because even though one-fire sounds easy...it requires a lot of brush control and doesn't tolerate perfectionism well. At any rate take a look and if you have questions contact me. I'll be on the road for the rest of the week, but will try to answer questions as I get the chance after the holiday.
Karla Pendleton
In sunny Silverton,CO...a china painter's paradise
Cate from Colorado
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Re: One Fire Painting by Karla Pendleton

Postby Cate » Tue Nov 20, 2012 10:24 pm

Thanks for this Karla
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