Mysore Arts & Crafts
In the traditional Mysore paintings, the artists used to prepare all the input materials required for executing the painting. This would include brushes, paints, board, gold foil etc. Artists used vegetable and mineral colours made out of pigments of leaves and flowers of various plants and minerals. Today the painting is done with commercially available media like poster and water colours. In the ancient times, paper, wood, wall and cloth formed the base for doing he painting. In modern times it is done mostly on paper pasted on to a board with glue or some other adhesive medium. After the preparation of the board, the required sketch is then made on the paper with a pencil. If a tracing of the sketch is already available it is then transferred on to the board with a carbon paper.
In the earlier days, sketching was made with charcoal prepared by burning tamarind twigs in an iron tube. Colours made out of minerals were prepared by grinding the minerals in a stone mortar and then put in water to make them soft in form of a paste. Brushes were made of different materials, which included squirrel, camel and goat hair. Sometimes grass blades were also used for making sharp lines. Today, commercially available water and poster colours are used with brushes of different grade available in the market. Once the sketch is made, the gesso work is taken up on the area ear marked.
Gesso work is normally done where embellishments are to be made. Design work is carried out on the mandapams, the jewelleries, the attire etc., with a specially prepared compound and a brush. On the completion of the work, after the compound dries, gold foils are placed over them and stuck firmly. Painting is subsequently done. After the painting is completed and it dries, a thin paper is placed on top of it and rubbed softly with a smooth soft stone to bring the richness in the relief work done with gold foil.