All posts by FrescoSchool

Get Started [007]: Degradation and Conservation of Frescoes

Deterioration of fresco paintings results from the open, porous nature of their support (walls and ceilings of buildings or other carriers) and their interaction with the surrounding micro climates.

  

The porous mortar backing provides an easy route for the movement of dilute salt solutions. Salts contained in the building materials or the surrounding area can be readily transported to the plaster underlying the painting. Old leaky roof, clogged gutters or subterranean walls and/or semi-buried walls - anything that would cause water to soak and remain in the wall will eventually bring salts from adjacent areas into the plaster. The wall and fresco can get wet from the rains and not be affected as long as it is exposed to freely moving air that would dry it naturally.

  

Expansion in volume associated with crystallization of these salts disrupts the plaster-pigment adhesion and leads to disintegration of the surface. Such crystallization depends on the identity of the salts and the moisture content of masonry which is subject to seasonal variations in atmospheric humidity and the amount of rain.   To Read Full Article Log In Now >> New to this site? Register Now >>

  

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Fresco Painting Demo and Introduction to Fresco Workshop Setup

Teach a beginner Fresco Workshop or offer a Fresco Painting Demo.

ilia fresco lecturing at the fresco schoolYou should look into teaching a fresco workshop or offering a fresco demo or presentation at a different venues.

Teaching an introduction to fresco workshop or giving a fresco painting demo is the best way to test your skill and understanding of the medium. Teaching a class puts you as close to the onsite work as possible and provides an opportunity to solve an array of situations and problems that your students will encounter all at once as oppose to one at the time. In addition offering a class or a demo will set you apart from the crowd - which is quite a boost for gaining recognition and publicity. You are fully capable of doing that using BFF Video Tutorials Set as the reference and guide to building up your class syllabus.

Here is the checklist I use, including sample handouts that I use for my fresco workshops at the Getty.

My Getty Introduction to Fresco Workshop/demo List

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Get Started [006]: Ceramic Tile as the Base for Fresco

Fresco Tile - a work of art and the best learning tool!

Ceramic tile is an amazing learning and practice instrument! This is where you start. With minimum of expense fresco student is able to study the color, form, values using materials available in local masonry stores. The results are unique to the nature of plaster and even the most simple ones are mesmerizing as they are and even more when framed. Fresco tile is a beautiful stand along art piece it is like a fragment of the wall or ceiling brought up close. From simple color sketch or element study for large fresco to highly realistic portraits or an abstract object is the range of the Fresco Tile.

Examples of the Buon Fresco works on the Ceramic Tiles:

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Fresco Studio General Setup

large fresco painting studio You don't need to big of a space, 20 feet by 30 feet of combined space just enough to work in small frescoes and studies for the big ones that will be done onsite. You should segment it as 20X20 for plaster and painting and 20X10 for design, cartoon drawing, color and paint preparation or the other way around.

There are many similarities in fresco versus other mediums studio setup. The extra stuff that you need is for the plaster and pigments - you need to devise ways to keep plaster making stuff and the dust away from the rest of the studio. You should have separate plaster and paint/pigments areas.

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Get Started [005]: Fresco Cartoon

fresco-cartoon-verne-1Cartoons are drawn on regular paper with pencil, graphite, charcoal, sepia chalk, etc., etc. The purpose of the cartoon is a thorough study and a final rendition of the composition, light, shadow and details of the future fresco. It is a preparatory drawing taken to the next level. Correctly done cartoon is a "stand along" artwork. Although optional in other painting mediums, Cartoon is essential when painting in Fresco not only as the main guideline for the transferring of the design onto freshly laid (fresco) plaster, but also as the main tool and method of understanding and orchestrating the steps for painting of the corresponding fresco.
Preparation of the cartoon for the small fresco slightly differs from the preparation of the large fresco cartoon. In this article we discuss the small fresco cartoon. Since this article is intended for the general audience and/or beginner fresco artist it makes sense to illustrate the directions with the actual examples from our fresco workshops. During our workshops artists work from their own cartoons that they have to prepare at home prior to the class. Since many of our students have little or no practical experience in fresco we do not judge nor expect student's cartoons to be perfect or even fully completed. However it will be helpful to establish some guidelines and explain the reasons behind them.

1 - "Cartoon" - a full scale drawing of the future fresco.

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Get Started [004]: Shop Home Depot

Red Sgraffito Fresco by iLia Fresco on ceramic tile 16X16, 2011

Red Sgraffito Fresco by iLia Fresco on ceramic tile 16X16, 2011

Most of the Fresco Plastering Tools are easily found at any local Building Materials store, like Home Depot. Brands will vary but the tools will not. Same tools may have different names, often sales people will not know all the name variations. Just head on to the appropriate isle and look for it yourself.
It is often confusing to find a particular fresco tool or a proper sand at the big building supply store and the store clerks are not familiar with the fresco painting process or materials you need. We have put together a short "iPhone frescoSnaps" video to help you find the right isle as well as to give you an idea of what you can find at the Home Depot that is suitable for fresco.

1 - How to Shop Home Depot for Fresco Painting Materials?

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