david smith’s st. patrick’s day 2013 label design for jameson irish whiskey
image courtesy of the artist
for st. patrick’s day 2013, irish whiskey brand jameson commissioned glass artist david adrian smith to create a limited edition label design,
the second in a series of annual releases by different artists. drawing on his craft, smith was interested in translating the intricate glass etching
and ornate gilding found in the decor of irish pubs to the bottle. reminiscent of the classic back bar mirror, his design encourages you to
‘embrace your irish spirit’ in celebration of festivities surrounding the march holiday.
‘embrace your irish spirit’
image © designboom
image © designboom
as an extension of the collaboration, smith transferred his motif to a larger scale in the form of a one-off reverse gilded and silvered ornate mirror.
he first hand sketched the design and transferred it to the back of the glass and brilliant cut part of the illustration using old stone wheels,
polishing them with a wood and felt wheel so that the crystal clear glass finish was restored. the cuts were then masked out and etchings—
employing a process from the early turn of the century which uses hydroflouric acid and distilled water in various ratios–were made to give the
reflective material various tones and depths. the area surrounding the jameson crest has been mica stippled to express a textured appearance
emulating the look of hammered steel. other techniques such as water gilding, and deep sandblasting have been used to define the words
‘irish whiskey’ and the ‘JJ&S’ design within the marroon circle in the right corner. the entire panel was then chemically silvered using nitrate
and a mirror backing painted onto its surface. the trumpets were gilded and scratched through this surface with a fine knife, in which to create shading,
a process known as verre églomisé.
to finish the piece, the centre of the was artwork was water gilded, with smaller areas–where there were elements of tight detail–screen printed to optimize
their appearance. the final gilding was done using 24crt, 22crt, 18crt, 16crt lemon gold and 12crt gold for a silver finish. smith then hand painted
the shades of colors along all of the areas with mother-of pearl inlay and glitter effects. hand blending was used on the ribbons using smiths cream and gold size.