Princess and the Pea

Here’s my latest small scale mosaic using mixed media. I’ve tried to tell the story of a grumpy princess for whom a minor discomfort is causing her major distress. But if she opened her eyes she would realise that her world is full of colour and light. This is my take on what I’ve produced. Perhaps you’ll interpret ‘The Princess and the Pea’ differently or find more meaning?

The centrepiece is an upcycled earring with its hang-y thing chopped off. What you can see is its back. On its front surface it was all glittery but I thought that the reverse looked just like a peapod. I’ve added colour with green acrylic pen just to prove the point.

These 10cm x 10cm mosaics are fiddly to make. As I’m not used to working on a small scale they are experimental and I always learn from them. Here’s an earlier version of ‘The Princess and the Pea’. I’d used opalescent white tiles for the bedsheets but once grouted they looked dull and uninteresting. I dug them all out, not a mean feat, and replaced them with shards of mirror. Hey presto! It seems to have brightened the piece. Also as I cleaned the mosaic the princess’s face rubbed off. Oops! I now have a proper pen that marks ceramic surfaces permanently.

The other thing that I’ve realised it that not all PVA glues are equal. My last few mosaics, including this one, have been a pig to grout because many of their tiny tiles came unstuck. Now I hate grouting anyway but this made the process ten times more onerous. Many rude words were uttered! I came to the conclusion that kiddy crafting glue doesn’t cut the mustard and now have proper manly builder’s glue as its replacement. It seems to have done the trick. My next mosaic is coming together in my head. Let’s hope that all my pieces will be stuck fast on the first try next time around.

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    • I’m glad that you like her. She’s quite experimental. I’m viewing her in a super critical way to improve my technique. I think I might remake her down the line with the tile spacing closer together.

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