I finally tried Batik!
I went to the craft complex near my condo with some out of town guests and we spent "Craft Friday," the day after Thanksgiving, trying our hands at one of SE Asia's favorite art forms.
The basics: you draw an image with wax, paint over it, and then melt the wax to allow the cloth below to stand out.
Actually we drew with pencil first, onto silk, then drew with wax.
Although the women operating the batik booth at the craft complex were willing to do the wax part for us, I tried my hand at it with the Labyrinth I made. It was really fun, even if my hand was a bit shaky and inexperienced with the wax tool. On my second piece I decided to let the ladies help since my second piece was pretty detailed (plus those ladies were so fun to watch!).
I used part of one of my drawings from last month, the train engine, since I thought it might something I could hang on my son's wall (he loves trains).
I had so much fun!
I realized too, that I'm not really as slow as I always say I am at working -- it's just my usual medium, collage, is slow. I was lightning fast at Batik (I made two pieces while everyone else made one and I probably could have made a third).
If I were a painter, I think I'd be faster. I realize that collage just takes longer. I'm okay with that. It's the medium I dream in, it's close to my heart and it's what I know best. So be it if I'm slower than I'd be in another medium (And I'm still working at making it faster).
I should have handled the train engineer differently in Batik to make the white outlines work better, I think the engine looked better before the wax was melted. All in all it was a fun experiment, though.
I'm definitely going to try to learn more about Batik while I'm in Malaysia. I think I'll take a more in-depth class sometime in the next few months. I'm thinking it would be cool to use some batik techniques on paper for my collages. At the very least it would be a fun take-home from my two years in Malaysia.