My Dutch-style tiles

On September 17, 2011, in Fun Stuff, Galleries, by lisa

Deer mouse — gifted

A sampling of the Dutch-style tiles I hand glazed for an art show, and as gifts to friends. The animals and plants all live in the Pacific Northwest: I wanted to make tiles inspired by old Delft tiles, but I wanted them to speak of my life here, today, rather than a life centuries gone in Europe. Scenes of windmills and 17th century courtiers are not what the PNW is about.

I got started doing these tiles when we were remodeling the house and I wanted Delft tiles around the fireplace (my mother-in-law lives in Amsterdam, and my wedding ring is from an old jeweler’s in that town). Alas, I could not afford the real thing, and I didn’t want a printed copy. So I thought, How hard could it be to make some, myself?

A year of work later, I had my tiles.

I  may make more at some point, but as of today (spring, 2014) my energies are going elsewhere, like to illustrating a middle-grade kids’ book I’m writing.

 

6 Responses to My Dutch-style tiles

  1. Maia says:

    i love these! i was wondering if you could tell me how you went about making them? im a student in australia and i have to do a major art work for school for my last year and im just brainstorming possibilities…i want to do something with ceramics and i just love these tiles (and i have to say it- your book wake unto me! so excited to hear about the sequel!). so yeah, how did you find out about how to create these, if you dont mind me asking? thanks again!

  2. lisa says:

    Hi Maia,
    Glad you like them!
    I got my first bit of instruction in how to make them at one of those ‘Paint Your Own Pottery’ studios; I knew I wanted to make Dutch-style tiles, but had no idea how to deal with glazes, firing, etc. The studio got me familiar with materials, and then I went to a huge pottery supply store in the industrial area of Seattle, where they sell supplies and also will fire your work for you, for a small fee. They also gave me guidance on which glazes to use, to get the effect I wanted. So, my process:
    1. wash dust off white bisque tiles
    2. coat faces of tiles with 2-3 coats of Mayco Foundations opaque white (think of it as your gesso, kind of), letting dry between coats
    3. sand off any heavy brush marks
    4. using a regular graphite pencil, sketch in my design (the graphite will burn off in the kiln, leaving no trace)
    5. paint design using Mayco Stroke & Coat colors (the white does not need to be covered; it will turn glossy when fired. No top coat of glaze is needed if the process is done this way, either — which is good, as in an earlier version of the tiles, painting on a top coat sometimes smeared the picture)
    6. bring to shop for firing
    Voila, tiles!

  3. Raddi Warfield says:

    Hi,

    Are the tiles for sale, and if so, how do I purchase them?

    Thanks

  4. lisa says:

    Alas, I gave away or sold all the best ones, and haven’t made any new tiles since.

  5. bea hartman says:

    I love these! My favorite is the spider in her web—such a great use of the format. I’ve been playing around making Delft-style tiles myself, and appreciate your sharing your methods.

  6. lisa says:

    Thanks! The tiles were a lot of fun to make, and I have vague dreams of making a giant mural like you might see in Portugal, but the likelihood of it ever happening…. Well, it’s about 2/3 of the way down my giant “projects I’d like to do” list. I’m sure you have similar. I looked at your website — cool art/books. I especially like the crow.

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