Referring to Jan Harrell’s “Enameling with Graphite and Sunshine Colors” video, I created my own enameled copper piece! I enameled both the back and front with graphite sketches on the front:
I mixed my own custom colors using Sunshine Enamels and distilled water. For pastels I mixed the colors with 19-1231 Mixing White. For the pink bird I mixed 77-1234 Purple with 10-117 Mixing Flux. Some of the colors looked much different before they were fired; once fired I was a bit disappointed in the resulting color. My recommendation would be to test-fire the colors on a scrap piece of copper (on the same foundation color) before using in your final piece.
The enamel “paints” were mixed to a thin consistency and applied like watercolors. After they dried I used a clay shaper to remove them from unwanted areas such as the graphite lines and the background.
This time the piece was fired at a lower temperature: 1375°F/746°C for 2 minutes.
It should be coated with one more thin layer of clear flux, but I haven’t decided if the piece is finished or not. I might want to add more color to some areas. One reason for not doing this would be that with each firing the graphite lines get lighter and less defined.
Sunshine Enamels can also be applied more thickly like acrylics, but if they’re too thick they can crack. If you like painting or coloring you really need to try these enamels. They are a lot of fun!