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Photographers and Artists

Batik painting

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Batik painting

Postby Kay » Sun 10 Apr 2011 18:48 GMT

Has anyone done this? I had a go on our recent visit to Langkawi. Unfortunately my painting seems to have gone missing. I thought it was in the suitcase but I must've lost it somewhere. :cry:

I wanted to do more paintings and was able to buy the wax pen thingy in Penang but haven't been able to get the wax itself yet. Plus I'll need the cloth to do it on.

The woman in the shop which sold the wax pens said it had to be cotton or silk. I guess it'll be easy enough to get some cotton to start with.

I thought batik was a really fun thing to do and I enjoyed it very much. It was quite easy to make something nice reasonably quickly, although you can do a lot more complex things too.

I don't usually like doing 'craft' type of things but I really took to batik very easily.
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Postby ruggie » Mon 11 Apr 2011 16:23 GMT

I've never tried it. You can do simple patterns for fabrics without the need for the pen - just drip wax from a candle. A taper or a box of birthday cake candles should give you enough control to do something a bit pictorial, too.
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Postby Kay » Mon 11 Apr 2011 17:10 GMT

What I did was more like a line drawing which I then coloured in with inks. The artist went over my pencil lines with the wax. Once that was done I was pretty much left with a colouring in job. Not quite as simple as it sounds.

There's lots of different ways to do batik, including block printing. I just happened to like the line drawing. I made my little masterpiece in about 40 minutes. What a pity I lost it. :(

Dave got a photo of the nearly finished version. Perhaps we can post it or write an article somewhere about making batik paintings.
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Postby ruggie » Tue 12 Apr 2011 20:29 GMT

There are several online sources - Amazon.com for a start, and this one:

[Edit: link removed.]

Shipping from the US won't be cheap. I would have thought you could find them in Asia somewhere.
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Postby Dave » Wed 13 Apr 2011 05:56 GMT

The pen's no problem, Ruggie - we were able to buy that OK in Penang. The odd thing (to Kay's and my mind, at least) is that they didn't sell the wax too.

From a very quick search, it seems that the wax used is normally a blend of beeswax and paraffin wax, with more paraffin wax if the "crackle" effect is wanted on the wax, more beeswax if a softer wax without crackle is wanted.

I'm sure we must be able to get suitable wax easily enough - candles should be OK for the paraffin wax, and there's a bee farm up the road. Apparently a double boiler is the thing to use for melting the wax.
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Postby Kay » Wed 13 Apr 2011 07:47 GMT

I had already seen that link yesterday, along with several others, as I spent some time searching. I should be able to find some wax in Asia, it's just a case of knowing where to look.

Ruggie, I'll remove your link. There's no reason to give these people a free advert.

Dave, I read that a double boiler doesn't get the temperature of the wax high enough.
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Postby ruggie » Wed 13 Apr 2011 11:06 GMT

Fill the outer chamber of the double boiler with oil if you need a higher temp. Odd that the pen suppliers don't know where to get the associated consumables.

Sorry, Kay - I should realise that you are at least as capable as I am of searching the net. Getting too used to spoon-feeding people. :oops:
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Postby Kay » Thu 14 Apr 2011 11:11 GMT

Woo hoo! My painting turned up. I hadn't unpacked my clothes properly and discovered it today inside a folded T-shirt. :D

I really did find it very hard to understand how it could have gone missing in the first place.
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Postby ruggie » Thu 14 Apr 2011 16:17 GMT

Let's have a photo?
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Postby Kay » Thu 14 Apr 2011 17:15 GMT

Gotta get it flattened out first. It's all crumpled but no harm done. Dave is doing the biz with heavy books as we're afraid to iron it.

It's not really a masterpiece, it only took about half an hour to do. :D
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Postby ruggie » Fri 15 Apr 2011 07:02 GMT

In your climate, you could probably spray it with water and hang it on the line with clothes pegs along the bottom edge to stretch it out.
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Postby Kay » Fri 15 Apr 2011 08:24 GMT

Might be worth a go as plan B, thanks, but we'll leave it under the heavy books for now and see how that goes.

Do you think there might be any interest in an article about doing this type of batik painting? Not so much a "how to" more of a "what I did on my holiday" type of piece. It might inspire people to see how quickly and easily you can create these things.

You could make small ones and create personalised cards with the paintings too.
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Postby ruggie » Sat 16 Apr 2011 18:27 GMT

I reckon an article in BE would go down well.
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