Two years back, a friend of mine gifted me a small address book with gemstone painting on the cover. She told me that the painting was done using ground gemstones. Since then, my quest to learn more about this painting has taken me through innumerable websites. But unfortunately my knowledge in gemstone painting is still limited.
The art of ground gemstone painting comes from the state of Rajasthan, India. Traditional techniques are used to make paintings out of semi precious gemstones such as amethyst, garnet, to name a few. These different gemstones are ground and used to bring out different colors in each painting. No artificial or synthetic colors are used. This process is entirely done by hand and thus these paintings do not loose their shine with time and they become as precious as the gemstones worn. These gemstones shine and give traditional richness. The painting is first sketched on back of the glass and then powdered gemstones are used, rather than paint, for color. This shows the highly creative and specialized art of the craftsmen of Rajasthan.
As I was searching for the gemstone painting technique I found a lot of Chinese gemstone paintings too. The difference is that they did not use powdered or ground gemstone alone but very small pieces of gemstones of different sizes and shapes. The beautiful designs were set on wooden board. I haven’t so far found the exact technique of doing it but there is always the thrill of finding more about it. As I learn I will keep updating this page.
If you are interested in gemstone painting ( the way I did), you are welcome to give it a try.
Tools of the Trade
Sharpie,Glass & Glue
Transfer the design of your choice to glass as shown below using the sharpie pen. The procedure is the same as in Reverse Glass Painting, where you paint on one side of the glass and view it from the other side. Please refer to my Reverse Glass Painting page for more details. I chose different colors of sharpie pen coordinating with the color I wanted to put. I did not want a black or dark outline for my picture.
2. Apply the glue on each part, one at a time. You can use any glue which dries clear.Then sprinkle the gemstone powder on the glued area. See that the gemstone powder is filled within the outlines. I found that it is easier to apply the gemstone powder one color at a time.
3. Remove the excess gempowder by slowly tapping the glass.
4. After you have completed gluing the gemstone powder, take a painting brush and slowly clean up the glass as you might find small particles of the powder stuck to your glass.
5. Your final product is now ready for framing and display.
I get number of emails every day inquiring about the gemstone powder. Sorry to say guys my search is still ongoing............. In the meantime I found out that a good alternative for gemstone is colored sand which is inexpensive and easily available, at the same time I think the painting came out pretty good. Sand has a sheen and glitter to it so all together the substitute is not bad.
Try it and let me know how it went. You are welcome to share the picture too.
My Sand Paintings
Designs to try
Want to try a couple of designs in Gemstone Painting? I always choose Birds as my subject. Try the design which I have given below. Happy Painting!!!!!!