Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Making a Critter with a Pattern

Sometimes in my mosaics, I use a pattern to make a critter or other motif. This time I actually had a camera handy and I remembered to use it!

1. I do a little research to find a photo or drawing of what I'm interested in making. Then I will make my own sketch- this time I sketched it straight onto the hardibacker cement board I'm creating the mosaic on. The advantage of sketching here is that I can be sure my scale works. The eye location is marked with a black bead.

2. Tracing paper - cool low tech tool. Here I traced my sketch and cut it out. Next, not shown, I cut it apart on the inside of the lines to leave a bit of space for grout. I cut away the inside of the eye location.

3. All the little pieces then traced, using permanent marker, onto the selected piece of stained glass. Leave spaces for cutting/breaking. Carefully cut and break one line at a time. Here I made a long score first along the left of the head all the way from bottom to top of glass piece. Again, be sure to cut just to the inside of the marker lines.

4. I use a grinder for making holes for eyes. And sometimes for tweaking the shape of a piece. Here the bunny is dry fitted. Stained glass does not always cooperate and break precisely. Re-cutting a piece is often necessary, but sometimes you can work around the oops. Here, at the bunnies neck the glass did not want to make that full curve break. I dry fitted in clover and decided that actually added to the look of the bunny hiding in a clover patch. To further add to that effect, I nipped out a bit from the back of his leg.

And here is the completed picture:

This mosaic was made for the Etsy Mosaic Artists Spring Challenge. The theme is "On the Wings of Spring". My kids collaborated with me to come up with this fanciful interpretation of the theme.

In addition to the main rose, there is a tiny flock of roses and three more just about to join the fun from the field.

Click on the picture to view it full screen size.

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