This watercolor painting on real vellum was done in a class under the direction of John J. Hodgson, master painter and furniture maker. John is an expert in anything he undertakes and I felt that my painting came out quite well. I took this class at the IGMA Guild School in Castine, Maine.
It was the most difficult painting I've ever worked on because the ground is actual vellum (embryo lamb skin). Therefore, it has all its flaws, but you cannot see them until the skin is wet with paint. One of the subsequent paintings I attempted had a big flaw on the cheek of the lady I was painting. I had to stop working on it as it could not be saved.
We used ordinary fine artist watercolor paints, John likes Schminke Horadam brand, and the finest possible sable brushes, including 4 o's - 0000. If you have ever worked in watercolor you know how unforgiving it can be depending on the ground material. With the vellum, there is no blending or moving the paint. When the brush is laid down, that is the stoke that stays. I felt I had to finish it in the week that we were at Castine and had to drop another class. The other instructor was quite understanding, but I did feel badly. I continued to work on it after class hours until my neck and shoulders ached, but, oh how I loved it.
John made the frame it is in and the painting is out of scale for a dolls house, being more in keeping with the description of a miniature painting, which had nothing to do with dolls houses. I bought one of John's beautiful watercolors and mine hangs beneath his on a wall next to the Leicester House, the only spot I could find to have them on display but stay out of the sun.