How to Make Reverse Glass Paintings
Glass Paintings » How to Make Reverse Glass Paintings
Paintings made on glass looks amazing, especially when the light reflects through it. Be it the wall hangings or glass paintings on windows, the light reflection adds to its appearance. The techniques involved in making these paintings, vary from simple paintings, to kiln fired and reverse glass paintings. Reverse glass painting is a very ancient technique of making paintings on glass. The technique of making such paintings is different from normal paintings. We would thus, discuss what this painting is, and how to make the same.
What is a reverse glass painting?
A painting made on the rear side of the glass, and viewed from the opposite side is known as a reverse glass painting. In such paintings, the viewing angle and the painting angle is different, and thus, the artist has to be very careful and know the technique, such that when the painting is viewed, it appears exactly as it should be.
Materials required to make this painting:
- Glass � 3mm thick glass would be perfect for making a wall hanging
- Paint brushes � of different numbers, and soft bristles
- Colors � Acrylic, Oil paints, Enamels, Spray paints (Any one)
- Painter's tape
- Color Palette
- Mirror Image of the design
How to make a reverse glass painting?
Clean the glass:
The first step before you begin the painting on the glass is clean the glass. Using water and soap clean the glass. Using acetone you can get rid of the stains on the glass. Using a clean dry cloth, wipe the glass dry.
Settle the glass:
Once you start painting, you should not move the glass. Thus, make sure that you set it at one place, where you can paint it with ease. Place it on a plain surface, and in a way that you have an easy access to all the portions of the painting.
Place the sketch below the glass, fix it with Painter's tape, so that the design does not move, and then you can work on the painting.
Sketch or Image:
In reverse glass painting, you must place the mirror image of the design below the glass. Be it any design, flowers, portrait, etc., make sure that you keep in mind the viewing angle. For example, if the original picture shows a girl holding a flower in the right hand, the sketch that you place below the glass should be the mirror image of the same, which means it shows the flower in her left hand. When you turn the painting, it will appear as it was in the real image.
The images of Lord Krishna given below will explain the concept further. The first image (A) is the actual image and second (B) is the mirror image. When the artist places 'B' below the glass, and makes a painting, and when the painting is viewed from the front side, it will appear as image 'A'
(Please ignore the colors; image given only to explain the idea of mirror image and real image)
Tracing the design:
Once the design is placed below the glass, mark an outline on the glass. You can either use the color and brush to mark this outline, or if you are not very good at it, using a marker or sketch pen will do. This outline is essential as it demarcates the area of the painting.
Applying a base coat of Primer is advisable before you begin the actual coloring. This is because the glass surface is smooth, and thus shading would be difficult. Also, the colors might not settle on the glass well. This base coat provides a comparatively rugged structure to paint the glass, and thus makes using colors very easy.
Before you actually start using colors, have a rough idea of the same in your mind. Make sure which colors you want to use, what shades, etc. Special sparkle colors are used to highlight jewelry or any other such embellishments.
The painting should have a proper mix of dark and light shades. This gives your painting a perfect contrast, and thus, enhances its beauty.
Once you complete the painting, giving it the final touches is important. Highlight the outlines, to give a brighter appearance to the colors. A proper mix of thick and thin outlines will highlight the painting further.
If the painting does not have any background, and you wish to enhance it further, you can do the same by using a crushed aluminum foil, or by applying a contrasting color in the background. A crushed aluminum foil makes the painting look rich.
Not only portraits, but you can make any design on the glass. While making portraits you have to be more careful about the actual image. On the other hand, a freehand or abstract art would not be very difficult because the mirror image concept does not apply to the same. Another example of such a reverse glass painting, can be seen in Mother Mary's image below. Image 'A' is a mirror image and image 'B' is the actual image.
(Ignore the colors, images given only to explain the concept)
Another point that can be understood well from this painting is the background. In image 'A' the background is light and textured, or in matte finish. On the contrary, in image 'B' the painting has a dark background, proper combination of light and dark shades, and shading. Thus, image 'B' looks brighter than image 'A'.
Using these ideas and instructions, make a reverse glass painting yourself. Choose a simple design if you are trying it out for the first time.