A gold leaf painting is an art popular for not losing its beauty even after a long time. Since they use leafs made of this metal, its original effect will not tarnish. Though there is paint already available to simulate similar effects, there is still a big difference between the faux piece and the genuine article.
It has been around for many centuries, first used by Indians. The medium consists of very thin sheets of the metal which are glued to the canvas to achieve maximum effect. It is typically applied together with egg tempera but over time, it has also been applied to oil paints and acrylic among others.
Gilding begins by applying a base coat over the selected surface. After drying, glue will be applied. Before it completely dries, the sheet has to be positioned and then brushed so that it sticks completely to the canvas. Another coat can then be applied for finishing.
Working with this medium requires a lot of experience and patience. The sheets are hammered so thinly that they can fall apart if used incorrectly. They should be handled carefully and there should be no strong breezes when working. To protect the sheets, a sealant is typically used to protect them from touch and the outside environment.
The sheets are usually placed between glassine papers. You can remove it by using a comb with a minimal amount of petroleum jelly on it. The comb is used to lift the sheet from the paper. Once the sheet leaves the paper, you can now transfer it.
Using precious metal on relief art does not come cheap. As a result, those who want to practice or learn the art of gilding will typically first begin with manipulating paint that simulates the effects of the sheets. The paint though will fade and tarnish once time passes.
The use of these sheets might also extend to gemstone paintings. This kind of art will use precious stones like rubies, sapphires, amethysts, and so on to achieve visual affects distinct from oil, acrylic and other traditional media. Using powdered gems will not only lend colors to the piece but it will also not be affected easily by environmental conditions.
Gold leaf painting can be seen in churches and buildings, ornamental objects, furniture, ceramics, and many more. They not only add prestige, they also add an extra dimension to an arts piece. If applied by a skilled artist, it can achieve strong effects that can raise the value of an art piece.
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