Painting Patina

Patina Painting


I often apply patina with a paint brush. I apply it to certain areas as a last step in my piece and to make the piece even more dramatic in appearance.

Another good reason to hand-paint patina is if you have set stones, such as a clear CZ. Why would you want the silver behind it to be black? Wouldn’t you rather keep that silver white so the stone sparkles?

It is one of the last steps in the creation of a piece. I apply the patina where I want it. I then remove the patina from typically the edge or where I did not want the patina but couldn’t help painting it there. I super clean the piece with soap and water or denatured alcohol then apply a protectic coat. The protective coat helps preserve the various shades of patina. Also, if and when someone shines up their piece with a polishing cloth or other tarnish-removing process they won’t remove the darkest patina.

It is important you apply patina in a well ventilated area, trying as best you can to NOT BREATHE the patina agent. Black Max is bad to breathe.

I explain more why's and how’s below each photo.


I sometimes use a tiny brush to get into tiny spaces. I need only the amount of patina that sticks to the cap of the bottle. When I get so close to see what I’m doing, I either paint in front of a fan or hold my breath!

Using a polishing disc, I am removing patina from the edge and bevel part of the edge.


On all my road pieces, I apply a dark patina to the road. I then have to clean up the edges and the road stripes,
using polishing discs on my flexible shaft.


Sometimes I apply patina by hand simple to not have to remove it from so much surface where I don’t want it. 
In this example, I applied it only on a small area on the back, as below.

I painted patina on the KK.999 and nowhere else on the backs of these post earrings.


If you look closely at this Bear’s butt, you’ll see where I took off the patina where I didn’t want to.
So, in this case I painted on patina as a patch job.


It might be my imagination, but when I set clear or white stones, as the CZ in this pendant, and dip the entire piece in a darkening agent, I feel it gets behind the stone and turns the white silver black. In my mind, this darkens the sparkle of the CZ. So, I hand-paint patina on pieces such as this, trying my best to not let it wick behind the stone.

For online courses in metal clay, go to I Love Silver, where you learn how to design and create your own silver creations.

© Kris A Kramer 2017