Friday, February 10, 2012

{Explore} Beeswax Collage



Have you chosen your word for 2012? If you're not familiar with the concept, the idea is to select a word to inspire and motivate you all year long. Last year I chose the word bloom, because I wanted to grow and blossom as an artist. This year I'm feeling adventurous and I want to expand my horizons by trying new techniques, discovering new materials, and being open to new ideas. So EXPLORE is the perfect choice for me!


My journey begins with a foray into the world of beeswax collage. I've been intrigued by this process for a long time, but felt hesitant to try it. I feared it would be too messy, too hot, and too difficult. I was wrong! All it required was a block of natural beeswax from the craft store, a metal tin for melting, a natural bristle brush, and an inexpensive griddle. I love the smell of the melting wax, and the dreamy quality it lends to my collage on canvas.


For this collage, I used encaustic wax, which is basically beeswax with resin added to it. This type of wax has a more durable finish and comes in a variety of colors. I have to admit that I probably wouldn't have ventured into this new territory without my trusty traveling companion and very dear friend Michelle! We had so much fun exploring this new medium together, and now I am hooked! I especially love the natural beeswax. The yellow tint lends a vintage patina and instantly ages your art. And as I mentioned, the smell is divine! The encaustic wax is not as pleasant, and definitely requires a well ventilated room. But it has its advantages too. If you're interested in learning more about beeswax and encaustic collage I recommend the books Encaustic Workshop and Encaustic Mixed Media by Patricia B. Seggebruch. Or check out this free e-book at Cloth Paper Scissors. I also enjoyed the Encaustic Collage video by Amy Stoner available for purchase as a DVD or a download at Cloth Paper Scissors.

My first exploration of 2012 was a huge success and I can't wait to embark on my next creative adventure! In the meantime, I hope you'll try something new and set off on your own artful journey. Bon voyage to all!



8 comments:

  1. i love the look of the beeswax. very cool idea!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Roni! I really enjoyed using the beeswax. I love how it fuses all the layers together!

      Delete
  2. Kim, Your beeswax collage turned out great! I really had trouble with this technique but we were working on plexiglass which we worked on both sides. Yikes! I might try it again since you got such great results. And the beeswax does smell great.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Lynda! I loved the technique, and I will definitely be using it a lot. I can see how the plexiglass would be challenging! I will have to give that a whirl too. The encaustic wax gave me a headache, but I still like the idea of that too.

      Delete
  3. Kim,
    The word of year is a good idea. I am afraid I wouldn't stick to it, but would have to choose "organize". Sounds pretty boring, but if I were organized my world would be much easier to have time to explore!
    Loved your beeswax canvas. It looks like vellum, so smooth. Thanks for sharing and good luck with your exploring!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Dolly! Organize is a great word, and I am on a mission this year to really get it all together! I have 12 pairs of scissors, and 20 glue sticks, and multiples of everything else because I can never find anything! I want to explore, but not for my supplies!

      Delete
  4. WHOO HOO, Kim!! I will happily continue to be your trusty traveling friend and experimental partner as long as you will have me!! We had lots of waxy fun - word to the wise - don't stir your melting wax too vigorously unless you want it splattered all over your shirt!! (my disaster - not Kim's)

    ReplyDelete
  5. Yay! Thrilled to have you on board Michelle! It's so much more fun to try out new art techniques with somebody else. Makes you braver too! I finally got my paintbrush unstuck from the wax by the way!

    ReplyDelete