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Color Copper Relief [2012-05-30]


The idea of the garden as an outdoor room has caught on in recent years. Once you view your yard as an extension of your home, the question becomes how to embellish it. Like decorating any well-appointed house, using art in the garden requires reflection on the part of the owner. Garden art can add a touch of whimsy or provide formal emphasis. Copper silhouettes planted in a ceramic urn with easy-care evergreen plants can take the place of hard-to-care-for flowers in a backyard garden. Gazing balls and silhouettes of dimensional flowers, birds and animals made of sheet copper grow more beautiful with time as they acquire a soft verdigris patina.
1 Clean the statue with copper cleaner, removing all dust and debris. This will ensure the heat will color the copper evenly across the entire surface. Let it dry.
2 Light the torch and with tweezers to steady the statue, begin to run the flame over the surface in short, light, even strokes. Copper is very sensitive and can become overheated quickly, potentially losing the desired color. The Etsy Metal Blog reports that the specific order in which copper changes color is gold, orange, pink, purple, dark blue and light blue. Work delicately and stop to check your work often.
3 Coat the statue in lacquer or wax after it has cooled to prevent the copper from oxidizing and losing the color. Be sure that the protective coating is specifically designed for use on copper, to prevent darkening or discoloration.