Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Beeswax collage - Home

Another technique I have been wanting to try for a while - a long while. Today was the day!
I used half of a game board (6"x9") as my substrate. For beeswax, I melted sheets of beeswax normally used to make rolled candles. For melting, I used a small crock pot in which I placed a small metal can (salmon). It took about a 1/2 hour to heat everything up but it worked perfectly. I used a utility natural bristled brush for applying the wax.
A few photos of the steps I went through while working on my collage.
#1 - The substrate - The game pieces have long been incorporated into collage bins and the boards have been just sitting so I decided to use one of them. I cut it in half and sanded the design off the paper of the playing surface so I would not have it showing through my collage and to keep the back of the board - a nice pebbly black surface - as the back of my collage.
#2 - I laser printed my collage images - vintage world map, neighborhood of houses, a large house and a woman standing - and trimmed them close. I downloaded the images from this Flicker Collage collection. The link is also on my sidebar under Online Resources - Collage Images. I referred to this video by Suze Weinberg to get started. All of my pieces were large so I applied beeswax to my substrate, laid my images down and used my heat gun to apply heat which melted the wax and incorporated the images into it. I added wax with the brush when needed. It is best to have something that helps spread the wax evenly over the surface. I used a crumpled piece of wax paper which worked reasonably well but was not ideal. I will try a skewer next time, using the pointy end for the fine work and laying it over to work the large areas.
#3 - I have collaged all the large images and have temporarily placed the red foil heart and the lace at the bottom.
#4 - All the words have been incorporated. The words were handwritten - black sharpie or white gel pen - on white tissue paper, dipped into the wax and positioned. It was more difficult than I thought to keep them straight and positioned correctly because as soon as I applied heat they were prone to moving around in the melted wax. It might have been more practical to use printed words from books or even laser printed ones.
Here is the finished collage. To attach the lace I applied wax to the bottom section with the brush, dipped the end of the lace in the wax and put it down on one edge and proceeded to position the rest of it by heating small sections and laying it down. I added some small hydrangea flowers to the collage which required more wax than I expected to keep them in place. I punched some holes in the top corners with my Cropadile and inserted and set large eyelets. Tied in a black ribbon to create a hanger.
I am pretty happy with my collage and look forward to trying it again with other materials - magazine images, paper napkins and adding some glitz like Suze did in her video!!