In this exclusive Mosaic Arts Online course, Betsy Gallery introduces her process for creating sand-cast concrete garden mushrooms. Betsy has discovered a way to use easily obtained materials to create these mushrooms. Once students learn this process, it can be repeated to create other mushroom sculptures and so much more. Betsy breaks down this process by demonstrating the creation of two different sized mushrooms. This allows the student to get comfortable with the materials using a small scale mushroom sculpture before moving on to a larger one. Many of the materials needed can be found at your local hardware store, and some of them are probably in your powder room. Betsy is known for her resourcefulness, and she is known to come up with creative solutions to any problem that might arise. This makes this course a very valuable and achievable tutorial for the beginner or the more experienced student.
Betsy does a great job of breaking this process down into simple steps. This allows students to complete each section before moving on to the next. Many people use polystyrene to create concrete sculptures, but her process makes it possible to create without using polystyrene. This allows the student to reuse the sand repeatedly, which is less messy and uses fewer tools than the polystyrene. This is a great decorative project for any area of your home or garden, and it will provide instant gratification.
Betsy includes a bonus “how to” instructive section at the end of this course. This covers how to use the proper tools and adhesive, and she provides great tips on how to mosaic the 3-D object. She will also demonstrate how to use the picque assiette method with a plate from her china collection. In the last section, there is a photo of the installed and completed mosaic mushroom in the garden.
This on-line course comes with a downloadable PDF with all the tools, materials, and resources you will need to accomplish these projects. This process is fun, (a little messy) and incredibly gratifying. Check out the FREE promo and interview video above.
Betsy Gallery's contemporary mosaics combine classical handmade Italian glass smalti and 24 karat gold tesserae with recycled porcelain, ceramics and found objects. Her use of noble materials and historical, psychological and literary references transform what was once considered a craft into fine art. Ancient wall mosaics were generally seen from a distance and individual tesserae were not carefully cut. Betsy shapes each tiny piece with a hammer and hardie defining harmonious edges. She diverges from ancient (mostly) anonymous mosaic artists in that she focuses on personal statements rather than religious or patrons' ceremonial themes. Betsy also makes replicas of ancient Greek, Roman and Byzantine mosaics to hone her skills.
Bio: Betsy's formal art training began at the Art Institute of Chicago. She continued her studies in Madrid, Spain, as well as Ravenna and Venice,Italy. Although she originally worked in oil, watercolor and printmaking, since 1999 Betsy has worked primarily in mosaics. She contributed multiples of 100 assemblages to a number of editions of Art-Life Limited Editions, collected by museums and institutions, such as Yale University. Her mosaics are in private collections in Santa Barbara, San Francisco, Marin County and Madrid, Spain, as well as the Society of American Mosaic Artists Traveling Mosaic "Quilt" 2004-2006, the SAMA exhibit at the Museum of Man in San Diego, 2009, and many local art shows and venues. Betsy also enjoys when not mosaicking to create concrete sculptures for her mosaics. She loves to use the sand cast method as well as create more structural pieces using polystyrene and mesh with concrete. Betsy also holds a Master of Clinical Art Therapy Degree.
Fantastic! What a great class. The teacher answered all my questions as she went along. Can't wait to start sandcasting mushrooms to mosaic. Catherine V.