Sicilian Painted Plate

I just got back from an amazing trip to Sicily, and one of the highlights was a lesson with a master cart painter, who showed me and my mother how to paint beautiful plates! Neither of us had much of any experience with oil painting or really much painting at all, but he patiently walked us through each step and we each produced a really beautiful plate! Here’s mine:

Our teacher was Damiano Rotella of Cinabro Carrettiere in Ragusa. He learned from a previous master cart painter, and now he and his carpenter partner have an apprentice of their own. Cinabro has even done collaborations with Dolce & Gabbana; it really felt like an honor to get a personal lesson from such an expert!

We started out with plates like this:

The our teacher demonstrated each step and told us what to do.

Here I am making my concentrate-y face :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

The results! Clockwise starting from top: Damiano’s, Mom’s, sample plate, mine:

And finally, my plate and Mom’s:

I’m so relieved that my plate made it back safely on the plane! I actually held it in my lap for a lot of the trip. It has a wire on the back to hang it up, so I hope to display it in my kitchen, once I figure out exactly where.

I really really enjoyed this experience and hope to paint some more in the future! :slight_smile:


Wow! Beautiful plate and what an experience!

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What a wonderful experience with your mom! Your plate turned out great and is really special memento.

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This is so awesome!! Love that you shared this experience with your mom.

I also love your concentration face and you steadying your hand. :laughing: I would so be the same! Especially with such a distracting teacher. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:


What plate? :innocent:

Seriously, what a wonderful opportunity to learn from a pro and come away with a beautiful memory and souvenir from your trip! Both you and your mom did a fabulous job!


What an extraordinary shared experience! Your plate looks like it could certainly fit in, on a masterfully-painted cart!

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I’ve already told you this, but your plate looks amazing! Sounds like you might have competition for your future love :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye: :rofl: :hearts:


That looks like an amazing experience. And you have such a wonderful keepsake from it, too :slight_smile:

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I almost spit out my tea reading this, which rarely happens. Thanks for a morning giggle :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:


I’m dying laughing over here… you guys are so funny!

Laura, your plate is gorgeous! What a fantastic memento from an awesome experience!

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What a pro looking job, wow! Hard to believe you are novice painters, they all turned out GREAT!

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What a wonderful experience to have, and a fantastic keepsake from your trip.

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:cherry_blossom: Congratulations! :blossom: Your super cool craft is one of this week’s Featured Projects! :tulip:


What a dream come true! Honestly, if I ever won the lottery, I’d just travel the world so I could do arts and crafts in new places. Love your plate!


Wow! What a great experience! Love the plate.
Mr. Teacher has great hair.


What an amazing souvenir and experience! I love that you took advantage of the opportunity to learn a new skill while visiting a foreign country. Both you and your mom created beautiful plates!

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This is such a great story! What a wonderful experience with your mum and a great finished product :hugs:

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