Everything is a learning experience and its good to go outside your comfort zone and just let creativity flow. I found that doing this batik on paper hit all areas. The original sketch was done from an idea in my head, no references, just thoughts flowing. I decided that I'd try my hand at batik using hot wax on paper instead of the faux batik that I'd used previously.
The build up from the drawing transfer, applying layers of wax over pigment had me doubting that the mess in front of me would ever turn into something salvageable. The final layers of wax over the entire piece after I had cracked the wax and applied a dark indigo wash to seep in the fissures really left me thinking this was only fit for the trash can. I didn't take a photo of it at that stage and should have as it really was not a pretty sight.
However, I made my batik sandwich of white paper and newsprint and ironed it to soak the wax out of the piece. When I changed newspapers to blot more wax, the transformation was appearing. This is the final piece. It will need some more tweaks and there are some things that I will be careful of in future batik work.
- I didn't use enough wax on the face of the fishwife, so the darker colour seeped under vital sections, darkening it more than I wanted. I think I can fix this with a light wash of acrylic, well watered down or perhaps a touch of pastel.
- I was too enthusiastic about cracking the wax and ended up with too much of the crackled effect.
- I need to go in and add more detail to some of the small fish. Their small size makes waxing detail difficult, so it may be simpler to wax them completely after a first wash then work on detail later.
- Now I want to do more!