“Woodland Sunflowers” is different from all my other votives, and it’s because of an idea I had long before I began making these.
This glass votive is etched inside by hand and finished with a handpainted design of woodland sunflowers based on one of my photos. It’s made from a repurposed glass roasted red pepper jar 5″ tall x 4″ in diameter. I etched the inside of the jar to better diffuse the light from the candle, then painted the entire design in alcohol inks. Each flower “center” is painted in metallic gold alcohol ink and the reflective quality gives it a bit of extra dimension (this is so difficult to capture in a photo).
It began with looking at that lovely oval jar from roasted red peppers, and visualizing not a smaller votive like the others, but something more like a nightlight or lamp. With those perfectly rounded sides I’d never be able to use the vinyl label material which would mean I’d have to hand paint this one. I tried Sharpies, but not for a design this big. Alcohol inks are the perfect permanent translucent color and work wonderfully on glass, but they run all over the place. I guessed I’d just have to work it out, and that’s a big part of the fun of what I do.
I have a larger print of the photo in my studio and set that up in front of me, studying what I loved about the photo, the random nature of wildflowers. Then, with my head full of dancing sunflowers, I used a cotton swab to paint the flowers on for the first coat, then brushed thinned green ink in between the flowers, then went back over to add the leaf shapes in both brushes and cotton swabs, little by little, catching any drips. Then I went back over and reinforced the sunflowers with both brushes and swabs, and added the colored center where one appeared.
This jar accommodates an LED tealight votive, but it can also be used with a smaller LED pillar candle, and with a timer it can become a little nightlight on a table. It can also be used with a battery operated strand of seed lights, as I have it displayed here.
This votive will ship with an LED tea light. Price includes shipping.
ABOUT THE ARTWORK
I love woodland sunflowers. No matter how many I see, or how many photos I have, I can always find another interpretation of their exuberant yellow expansiveness. The day in 2009 I photographed these woodland sunflowers along the Panhandle Trail I was captivated by fields of them leading off into the woods among the trees. Later, looking at photos, there was just something about this one that captured what I envisioned of the photo I wanted. Visit the photo here.
A Woodland Sunflowers tray to go with the votive
I also have a wooden tray with the photo image that might pair nicely in a kitchen. I pretty much always have a Woodland Sunflowers tray on hand, 10″ x 13″ made of lightweight wood with a print of the photo in the bottom and trimmed in green acrylic paint that coordinates with the photo. This photo alko shows one of the coasters I made for my Panhandle Trail exhibit this year too. I haven’t listed them yet, but if you are interested, please let me know.
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