Ancient Art

Etruscan Man1

I have a beeswax melting pot that I got years ago when I used to do a lot of silk painting and used to use it to do batik with paraffin wax.  I recently excavated it from the depths of a cupboard because I had some thin pieces of wood from the storm damaged shed in the garden and wanted to try creating a piece of art with them.

I’ve seen Suze Weinberg demonstrating some fun techniques with wax at shows, so thought I’d give it a go.  I have some collage paper which features ancient paintings of faces (possibly Roman mummy portraits) and one in particular had a background a very similar colour to my wooden panel.

So I got my hot wax and had fun splodging wax around.  I used a heat tool to move the wax around or smooth it, then when almost set, I used one of the stamps from Dusky Damask to stamp into the wax in places.  I added some mosaic tiles and a piece of paper clay then used Perfect Pearls to highlight the texture.

I added a little Pan Pastel along the way and love the idea that I was using ancient materials – pigment and wax – on a piece with an ancient theme.  I brushed the pastel onto the wax then heated it with the gun and the colour broke up and swirled around in a quite mesmerising way.

It proved rather difficult to photograph as the texture and sheen are hard to capture, so I’ve taken some close ups at different angles.  The wood has a wonderful mix of colours from weathering and the original stain and lots of texture around the edges.  The wax has encapsulated all of that and the colour is actually a very rich and glowing mixture of bronzy browns.

Click on any of the images to enlarge.

I used the long border stamps from Dusky Damask around the edges of the picture and bedded some mosaic tiles into the warm wax, then added another layer of wax over them.