Fired Enamel Painting
Halcyon Origin - Dragon
Enamel micro-painting varies in presentation, aesthetic pursuit, and production methods between the East and West, yet two things remain constant: its works are considered as extremely precious artistic treasures due to their bright, rich, and delicate colors, and the making process is notoriously difficult and demanding, resembling a veritable descent into hell.
Halcyon Origin - Sea & Cliff
A rare art mastered by a select few through arduous training
It takes a painter decades to progress from painting on porcelain to miniature painting, and then to master the technique of using enamel to paint miniature works.
It is one of the most difficult techniques in porcelain painting. And this is just one of several factors that contribute to the rarity of enamel miniature-paintings.
The grueling production process: one color, one fire
On the other hand, enamel pigments could only be fired at the precise temperature to achieve the expected color, e.g., a red pigment would be grey if fired at a higher temperature, or green if fired at a lower temperature. The process of creating an enamel miniature-painting requires a dozen to dozens of firings at temperatures, from a high temperature of over a thousand degrees to a low temperature of a few hundred degrees. Every session has the risk of breaking, cracking, or blistering; any fragmentation indicates that the artist's hours of concentration, their inspiration, and all of their labor went in waste. It hurts too much to have a piece of work that you've taken as your life goes up in flames.
The pigment has to be applied multitimes to achieve the "graduate change"
The current situation in which enamel works are hard to find has been influenced by the high threshold for painters on the one hand, and the arduous and laborious process of generating works on the other.
The stunning encounter of porcelain and enamel - FalangcaiThe main difference between Eastern and Western enamel is that in the East, enamel is usually painted on porcelian. This is a stunning encounter. The warm and glossy texture of porcelian complements and highlights the intricate and colorful enamel paintings, making them more rich and layered, and captivating to the viewer. The gorgeous and exquisite enamel also enhances the elegance and grace of the porcelian. That why that even though it is born out of Western enamel technology, Falangcai was even more sought after by European royals and nobles. They believed that Falangcai represents what can be considered as a superior form of beauty.