Today I'm the host for the February A Vintage Journey challenge - and my challenge is To Melt It!
Here is the challenge description:
This month we're asking everyone to MELT IT! Get out the UTEE (ultra thick embossing enamel), beeswax, encaustic wax, embossing powders or good old wax crayons and a heat tool and get melting to create something in a vintage; shabby; mixed media; art journaling; industrial, timeworn or steampunk style.
I was so excited to be hosting this because I knew I wanted to get out my Encaustic Wax kit and supplies and really sit down to learn how to make a landscape - and I'm SO excited to show you what I learned and was able to create!!
First, here are two samples that I actually framed - details on how I made them as well as how I decorated the frame follow.
I also have links below to a YouTube Video and web shops where you can order your own beginners kit if you are so inspired!
Here is a lovely landscape scene I created.
(the panels are 4 1/8" x 5 7/8")
and here is a patch of a green leafy plant!
I bought my kit probably 10 years ago and I've played with it maybe 4 times - never learning any techniques just melting the wax and 'ironing' over the paper - which came out pretty cool, but nothing I could control and nothing that particularly looked like a scene!?!
(I was working full time and just never had enough hours in the day!)
You use special paper with the melted wax that is like glossy card. You'll see a package of the paper in the top left corner below which shows my beginners kit as well as some extra wax that I purchased later.
Here's a link to the Encaustic Art company based in the Netherlands
Here's a link to a company in Wisconsin that sells starter sets
Here's a link to a company in Colorado that sells starter sets
The process for the sky is to melt white, blues, red - whatever colors you want, onto the iron. It's a special iron - with the proper setting for melting wax -and is small - about the size of your outstretched hand. You just rub the wax over the iron and it melts into a puddle.
You move the iron left to right in a half circle, gliding lightly over the paper to spread the melted wax.
It doesn't look like much - yet!
Here are the colors I used for the landscape -
moving the iron along the bottom in a lazy figure 8 back and forth with the brown color at the top.
Then I added more wax for some fun detail created by laying the iron on the card and lifting it off quickly.
How cool is the look of this??!!
I made several of these, one after another in just a few minutes - using slightly different colors - you really can't tell exactly how it will come out - and you can always go over it again to melt the wax and completely redo!
Then I learned how to use the point of the iron to create plants in the foreground like this on the right
and this on the left.
Here are a few more that I made all within an hours time. It's really addictive because each one is different and you wonder what you will end up with each time!
The skies can look a lot like the Northern Lights depending on what colors you use.
This one ended up with a bridge-like shape in the middle!
Here are a couple of panels I made using just blue and white wax and not doing the landscape figure 8 part - just laying and removing the iron - they look rather like a stormy sea don't you think?!
There are many more techniques you can learn to create beautiful fields of flowers, birds flying in the air and even castles - but that will be for another day!
Here's how I decorated the frames.
Then I rubbed Bronze Age Metallique Wax Art Alchemy from Prima over them with my finger just to highlight them a bit.
I wanted my panels to be the focus so I didn't want to make the frames too ornate.
(this wax smells wonderful by the way!)
And I glued Idea-ology Word Bands to the bottom of each one.
This one says " reality has limits, imagination is boundless"
This Word Band says "the journey awakens the soul".
I really just can't stop looking at these and can't believe I was able to make them!
Now I want to go try it some more!!
Here's a short video I found on YouTube where I learned all three of the techniques I used on my panels - the sky, the landscape and the foliage in the foreground - they are all easy to learn and I was able to do it after two or three tries!
You can see how I've used the encaustic wax on some cards in the past on my blog posts here and here.
So how will you "Melt It"? We hope you will join us over at A Vintage Journey - you have until Thursday March 1 at 6 pm Great Britain Time (they are 7 hours ahead of Eastern Time) And there's a prize from Country View Crafts for one lucky random entry!
Supplies: Encaustic Wax, Encaustic Painting Iron, Encaustic Painting Cards - www.artsencaustic.com, Media Black Gesso - Dina Wakley, Bronze Age Metallique Wax Art Alchemy - Prima, Idea-ology Mini Framed Panels, Word Bands.