Enamel Portrait Miniatures

“The Techniques”

By Gillie Hoyte Byrom

Enamelling is the art of fusing glass to metal. Gillie finds this medium both challenging and fascinating involving an exacting combination of art, chemistry and risk.


Each portrait has been fired in a kiln at 750°C about a dozen times and undergoes a dramatic colour change which reverts as the enamel cools.

Shape marked out for cutting.

Shaping the metal to counteract stresses of heating.

Applying ground enamel to the clean copper to make the base.

A line drawing is transferred by tracing over white carbon paper and replacing with enamel.

Second of seven firings in the hand painting process.

Applying gold.

The Finished Piece

Detail of the ruff.

The Presidential Medal for The Hilliard Society of Miniaturists.

© Gillie Hoyte Byrom

Just coming off the press:

The Practice of Painting in Enamel

By Gillie Hoyte Byrom

It is the first time in the 400 year history of vitreous enamel painting that a book has been written which fully describes the techniques and it has received some excellent reviews already.

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