Sunday, November 17, 2013

Helen Brown • Watercolor Batik • Finishing Up

So now the painting is finished, (see two previous posts) but it is completely covered with paraffin. So the next step is to iron out the wax so that all that is left is a watercolor painting on rice paper.

I take yesterday’s newspaper, slip the painting into the middle and use my ski waxing iron to heat up the painting until I can see wax pouring out and getting absorbed into the newsprint. I repeat this process at least 4 times to make sure all the wax is gone. The photo below shows white newsprint. You don't really need to use unprinted newsprint. The regular newspaper is fine.

Once I’m sure all the wax is removed (i.e. no more wax appears on the absorbent paper while pressing with a hot iron), I adhere the batik to a piece of 300 lb. watercolor paper. I don’t always do this step, but if I want it to lie very flat in the frame, I do. Here’s how: I use a credit card and spread Matte Medium over the watercolor paper. When I’m sure it is evenly spread, I place the painting onto it and brayer it down with a roller OVER a piece of wax paper. Then I carefully remove the wax paper and let it dry flat.

Be sure to sign your work! I usually do that before using the matte medium.

At the Tumalo Art Co. after Thanksgiving, you will see at least 8 of these little batik paintings. Stop by!

The Tumalo Art Co. artists have also made amazing little works of art for ornaments. David Kinker, another High Desert Art League member will have small works there, too. 

I love the holidays!  Hope you do, too!

This blog is produced by the High Desert Art League. We are a group of artists who show together in and around Central Oregon. We are currently showing our work at St. Charles Medical Center on the cafeteria level, and at Central Oregon Community College in the Rotunda Gallery of the campus library. Our Broken Top Clubhouse show comes down Wednesday, November 20.


  1. This looks so interesting, but I think I have to see the actual process to really understand the process. You are creating beautiful work.