Monday, April 5, 2010

Grisaille, a closer look

The first thing I'm going to do with my Time Machine is go back to when I was ten years old, and read the instructions on my Mother's bottle of fake tan that said "Do Not apply liberally to the head, neck, chest and face before you head out to the shopping mall to try and impress the girls".

After that's taken care of, I'd probably head back to Rome and check in with one of the decorative painting studios. I wouldn't actually work there or anything because, let's face it, who wants to work that hard?

I started painting separate elements a few years back with the idea of scanning them in and then arranging them in Photoshop. With my partner Mark, we developed a method of printing these new compositions at any scale. This is particularly suited to commercial work, as we can create as many repeats as we need, and on pretty much any substrate.

Here are a few examples of the raw Grisaille elements that I hand-painted. I'm including them here as a study aid for anyone interested in this art form. Of course, you could always just build your own Time Machine.

Here's an image of a project we finished recently. See if you can spot the image of the vase above...


  1. VERY cool!
    So you just fool around with the elements in Photoshop? Seems like the perfect way to do it without a commitment, if you will. Guess I should get better at it. I need someone to sit down with me for a few hours; "book" learning is not the quickest.

    I've always loved grottesca. Last time we were in Italy, we were on a grottesca and marble search. Very few people would understand, lol.


  2. I recommend visiting Portugal. In Porto for example you can see beautifully decorated churches covered in tiles painted in this same technique, thank you for introducing me to what this stile is called!