Fairy Fossil


Fairy Fossil
Medium: Watercolor, ink, gesso relief, metallic pigments, on birch board
Size: 8×8 inches

Fairy fossil unearthed on private land in an Oakland resident’s backyard. “My daughter was gathering dirt to make mud pies,” says Stephanie Pui-Mun Law, “when she scraped her knuckles on rock. We thought it was concrete from the old foundation but when we cleared the dirt away we saw the bones.” Paleontologists are still authenticating the finding, “But it sure looks like a fairy to me,” says Ms. Law. 

* * *

The making of:

Birch board, and a sketch on tracing paper initially.


Transferred to the board.


Using gesso (watercolor ground) I built up a relief texture, first for the bones…


…and then for the rest of the background, by dabbing a large brush to create a mottled rough texture.


Diluted ink and watercolor for a first pass of color. Since it’s fairly diluted, it pooled into the cracks and crevices, accentuating the relief.


Paint, ink, gel pens, and many hours later.


{ Leave a Reply ? }

  1. Terry

    Just as I suspected, I expect we’ll find a lot more of these little fae critters, if we start digging the rest of your garden . It looks to me the poor little fellow has been over worked by someone, I think Steph you’ll have to accompany me, down to the station, the police station that is ha 😀 …

  2. Paula

    This is just brilliant, thanks for sharing your process with us… Beautiful art work! <3

  3. Robin

    I just love this idea!!! I know your daughter enjoys every minute with you. You must be so interesting to be around. I haven’t been on the computer for awhile and miss your blog. You are the best!!!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *