Our Big Art Sale has begun-From Now until the end of March all Wall Art will be 40-50% off!
This is a great opportunity to add works of Shenandoah Valley Artist’s -like Helen Jean Smith, Eric Schauer, R. Byram and KB Getz- to your collections.
*Framed prints from The Woodstock Gallery are 40% off- like this charming view of the Blue Ridge Mountains by R. Byram:And this print of a watercolor by Elizabeth Strippy depicting a bird’s eye view of the Shenandoah River-*All original paintings, signs and mirrors by MJ Seal are 50% off- like this very textured, impressionistic view of a local Valley forest-The black and gold cassetta-style frame it’s housed in was also made by MJ Seal-Some of his more recent work is included in this sale such as this illustration of a red maple tree-
It’s hand made, reverse-style gilt frame is both modern and classic-and really pops of the wall!
This sale includes a variety of loose and matted prints like this stylized scene of walnut gathering at the Forestville Mill by Helen Jean Smith-And this print of a painting by Gregory Clair-All prints are signed and numbered by the artist and depict local scenery, flora and fauna in styles from photorealistic to primitive to impressionistic- there are 3 large racks filled with them – so you are sure to find something to suit. And at 50% off there are no excuses for not adding to your collections!
First I took a plate of clear picture framing glass and rubbed it down with alcohol to thoroughly remove any grime or oils. The glass’ surface must be scrupulously clean- if it is not you’ll have issues with peeling later on.
Then I drew up a little design for some corner ornaments on a post it note. I placed that under each corner and carefully dabbed on a thick coating of contact gilding adhesive. I used Pebeo’s Gedeo Mixtion Relief which comes in an easy-to-use tube with a fine-tip applicator. The adhesive is white when wet but dries clear. Remember you are reverse gilding/silvering- so you will be working in reverse on the inside surface of the soon to be mirror.
After the adhesive dried I cut up a sheet of 23 kt transfer gold leaf. I then carefully pressed the leaf (gold side down) into the adhesive. The parchment backing of the leaf was peeled back leaving the gold thoroughly stuck in place on the ornaments.
After the gilding size has cured for a few days I dusted off the excess gold leaf and sealed up the ornaments with a layer of raw sienna acrylic paint- which gives the overlying layer of gold a richer color and renders the ornaments opaque-
Next I turn the glass into a mirror with some handy-dandy Looking Glass Silver spray paint from Krylon-
The Looking Glass paint is easy to use- just make sure to apply it in multiple thin coats or the mirror with develop a blotchy appearance. Do this outside. Yeah note the weird reflections around the mirror-in-progress above- I did this in the parking lot against my car using a sheet of old plexiglass as a shield- hence the hubcap visible in the upper left.
After the spraypaint has dried (which only takes a few minutes) it needs to be top coated with something to protect it- I find Rust-Oleum’s Matte Clear Enamel works wonderfully. The enamel coating seals up the looking glass coating and it’s matte appearance makes the reflective finish more pronounced and brighter.
After the enamel has cured for a bit the mirror is ready to be framed. I placed this mirror in a cassetta-style frame I made a few years ago. The gilt ornaments beautifully complement this simple but classic molding profile.
A slightly closer view-
The Looking Glass paint gives a softer reflective effect than commercially made mirrors. It also has a slight texture to it (due to the droplets of paint) and with a dark board placed behind it takes on the appearance of an antique mirror.
A finished experiment in parcel gilding a mirror- I took a piece of plain antique glass and painted little Fleur de Lis designs in the corners on the back of the glass with aqua size. Then when the size set up I gilded them with 24 kt gold leaf. After sealing up the gold with yellow acrylic paint I silvered the back of the glass with mirror finish spray paint.