Introduction: Traditional Mud Mirror Art
A state in India named as Gujarat and Kutch is a place within the state. When I was traveling through that part of the land, I fell in love with the beauty and the art of the place. When you will come across that place, you will meet many ODD BHUNGA (Mud House), and the houses are beautifully decorated with mirrors. Mostly they use circular mirrors to decorate the walls and this is called Lippan Kaam ( Lippan work).
This Lippan work is also known as Mud Mirror Work. This is the traditional mural craft of Kutch. They define this work as LIPPAN means Mud-washing and KAAM means work. Apart from the wall decoration they use their creativity over the wooden panel to decorate their house.
The people are highly creative as they can play with mud beautifully and shape the mud with stunning rich and embroidery patterns. The mirrors they use are called AABHLA and find in various shapes like round, diamond, triangular, etc. And they use white clay to print over the wooden panel. Instead of the wooden board, here I am using a white canvas board and it's only because of its easy availability. Otherwise, if you have a wooden board, only one thing you should do, you should add a white clay layer uniformly first on the board and let it dry for a couple of days.
Recently I came across the Instructable contest page and found that Home Decor Contest is going on. So I thought this Indian traditional artwork is perfect for the contest and I will be happy to share my knowledge with all.
Let go and make this beautiful craft, I know you will gonna enjoy it.
You can visit my website for more DIY art and Crafts: artwithdeva
Step 1: Draw the Designs on Canvas
On the first step, take a canvas of your own preference size. I would like to suggest a canvas board instead of the canvas frame. Then draw the desired pattern. I have drawn my own design over the canvas board.
First I have kept a 5 mm margin from each end of the board with the help of a ruler and pencil. And draw the design within the frame. I have basically chosen a diamond pattern.
To give it a more traditional look, I have added just two elephants in two corners.
If you are good at drawing then draw with freehand. Otherwise, just download the same size stencil to get the design.
Remember a key point, first, check the sizes of mirrors you have, then try to draw the design in which the mirrors will look awesome.
Step 2: Glue the Mirrors and Kundan
Now it's my favorite part, i.e. to put the mirror over the design on the canvas. Basically I have chosen a small diamond pattern to decorate the edges and the main tree diamond designs.
I have used craft glue to put the mirror.
Then as I was predecided to color the edges with black acrylic color, I have put them with 00 number brushes. Don't use water while coloring.
If the color gets spilled over the mirror, then do not worry, its easily removed later with a cotton cloth.
You can also put the mirrors after the coloring part is over, there is no issue on either case.
Step 3: Colour the Design
On the rest of the part, I have put colours first. I have chosen some basic traditional colours which is usually used on Gujurat culture in India. And I have chosen some which is contrast to each other.
All the colours, I have chosen are Acrylic colours.
For the background colour, I have chosen a light brown colour as I wanted to give it a wooden look. So I mixed dark Brown Acrylic colour and White Acrylic colour.
Step 4: Place the Mirrors Over Colour
Now out the Mirrors and Kundan you have. Put it by using craft glue. The best part of craft glue over the canvas is, it's dried up so quickly and easily.
Step 5: Clay Work-1
Now its time to put the clay. Generally, when they are working over the big scale area or on the wall of a house, Gujrati people choose mud. But for small scale purposes or for decoration purposes nowadays clay is being used as a substitute material.
I have taken air dry clay, which I have got from the market. This box of air-dry clay comes with two packets, one is called Resin and another one is called Hardener.
Then to put it on the sides, rolled it up on a plain surface area with equal thickness.
To avoid the stickiness of the clay, add some Talcum powder over the sheet where you are going to work over.
In some places, I left for petal design. For that, you should take a tiny amount of clay, roll it like a ball by using your two calms. Then press the middle part and squeeze the opposite sides.
Use a toothpick to resize the clay over the canvas.
Step 6: Clay Work-2
I have placed some big size mirrors in the corner of the canvas only to give it a rich look, and it really worked.
You can place the clay just adjacent to the mirror or you can place just with a little gap. Both will look good.
Step 7: Colour the Clay
Now on the final stage, colour the clay with white Acrylic colour, And better to use the smallest number brush always you have. Be aware while colouring this part, otherwise, the colour will get over another colour and make it a mess.
Now to in some places, I have put some dots, and for that, I have used the backside of the brush. You may use the nail dotting tools if you have.
Step 8: Conclusion
Let the color dried off completely, and now your painting is ready to decor your house or workplace.
This artwork will give a beautiful look to the interior of the living or workplace.
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