China painting is more than simply decorating dinnerware with floral motifs. Granted this is still practiced but many of the artists today are expanding the perception of porcelain art by painting portraits, wildlife, landscapes, and still life just like any other medium. Many artists are now painting on porcelain tiles and framing these pieces just as a canvas. The porcelain is a blank canvas and the possibilities are endless. When it comes to painting pieces such as vases etc. the artist gets an added challenge in design in composing the piece to flow and compliment the piece. The process of painting involves using a dry mineral paint that is mixed with usually an oil of some kind to allow it to be applied to the porcelain. When fired in a kiln to around 1400 degrees the mineral color permeates the glaze and becomes permanent. The colors are translucent like watercolor so colors are layered over each other in multiple firings. Some pieces can have a least 5 firings and with added embellishments of raised pasted and gold even more. Since the paint is much like watercolor the subject is worked from light to dark. In saying, if you have a highlight in the subject that highlight must be preserved from the first fire on. There is no going back and throwing in a white highlight like one can in oil painting.