They say a picture is worth a thousand words and I know the quality of that picture will have a lot to do with that! That being said I’d like to have a photographic history of the frames made during our Scottsdale adventure. Seems as if the best place available is on top of the carving bench with the LED light on and the shade closed. Not ideal but the best possibility here in Scottsdale. These two pictures of the frame have very subtle differences:
Can you spot the difference? On the left is how the composition gold looks when it’s first applied — notice how shiny and almost brassy it appears? Compare that to the image on the right. Here the panels (coved section on inside) and the outer band have been very lightly scuffed with 4/0 steel wool to knock down that shininess. A traditional method of treating gold leafed frames is to alternate burnished and mat finish sections. Since composition gold can’t be burnished I’ll leave alternating sections (carved corners and inner ribbon) un-scuffed by the steel wool to hopefully achieve that traditional effect. After that the entire frame was sealed with two coats of platinum blonde shellac applied with an air brush. The last step is to tone it down somewhat, I’m working up a few samples before I commit to that process.
In the meantime I’ve started on another frame based on a design by Mary May. It features a Celtic Knot. Here’s a picture of the almost completed frame as a teaser:
This is actually the bottom of the frame in my photo set up which shows the depth of this particular carving. I will tell you this, when Mary May demonstrated this knot it’s on a solid, flat piece of Oak. Doing this carving on a mitered corner with a radiused profile really added a degree of difficulty to it. I’ll share the process and complications in my next blog about it but it was a great learning experience, one that I think turned out successfully.