22 July 2014

Creative Play: Wax Relief Watercolor


Continuing on my "Play With Watercolor" journey over the past few days I wanted to experiment a bit with wax relief or in simpler terms using a white crayon to draw a picture on white paper and then painting over it with water color.

While just trying to come up with an idea of something to draw that I could play with, I was inspired by this torn paper art project I did of our little clan a few years ago. (Scroll down a bit to see the photo). This little cartoon version of our family has appeared in many different places over the years. We definitely needed an update since The Bug is significantly taller than she was years ago. So I decided to do a quick sketch of the family for my attempt at wax relief this week.


I did this orange version first. I used a white crayon from a 48-pack we picked up last year for another art project we did for Valentine's Day. First, it's very tough to draw white on white. I tried to sit so that the light from the window illuminated the crayon drawing on the paper, but it was tricky.

I also wasn't too impressed with the cheap white crayon. It didn't go on heavy enough and for the first few hours after I painted over it, it didn't look like it was really going to show up. By the next day, it was plenty visible but I was convinced I needed to get a better quality crayon. Thankfully we have a lot of old crayons around here.

My second attempt was the blue one above. This time I used a nice Crayola white crayon and it was so much easier to see and showed up so much better when I painted over it. At this point I decided maybe I should try doing a third picture and making a series of these. So I decided to try it in lime green.


This drawing was a little more random and as you can see it was still drying on the painting board when I took the picture. The proportions on this one aren't quite so good but I do like that each one is a little different. I thought about maybe framing these and hanging them together somewhere. We don't have room for them now, but maybe down the road, in the near future they might be fun hanging in a bathroom or something.


I have to think a little more about the possibilities. Maybe even for kiddo's bedroom they would be fun. I might need to do one more in pink, but I'm out of water color paper. Luckily we have two great art supply stores within walking distance of my house. Love that.

I would also like to experiment a bit with wax relief fabric dying. I blogged last fall about these scarves created by Elsie at A Beautiful Mess. This watercolor project was a good start to just wrap my head around how the color takes, what kind of crayon works best, etc. Simple and fun.

all images by kalanicut

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