Monday, August 06, 2007

"Heart song"

Beeswax collage on canvas paper - mosaic wall hanging
I decided to try my hand at beeswax collage recently, and this is my first finished piece. My friend Debbie showed me some techniques months ago, and I was particularly intrigued by the way the wax saturates papers and makes them translucent. Although I've seen wax manipulated with a heat tool, I really liked using a quilting iron to make the surface smooth. I deliberately selected old music book pages and thin handmade papers that would become translucent when coated with wax. I decided to make small mosaic squares, so that if I did something irreparable, I could just toss the square and start over. One of the best features of beeswax is that it's almost impossible to do something irreparable -- just reheat the wax, and items can be moved or eliminated from the collage. The wax also serves to preserve the papers beneath, so it requires no additional fixative. I also love the texture that the beeswax leaves behind when pressed with the quilting iron. I will definitely continue to explore this collage medium. I was also pleased with the simple, colorful graphic nature of the piece.

To construct the wall hanging, I punched tiny holes in each of the squares, and used parts of round black paper clips (clipiolas) as jump rings to hang them. The piece looks particularly striking when hanging in a window, where the musical backing shines through to the front, and the hearts glow a fiery red.

This piece is dedicated to our friend Jodi Pitcheralle, 1957-2007 - I will dedicate a whole post to Jodi in the future, but I can't right now.


DEW said...

I KNEW you would do this - take a technique and make it all your own, transforming it to a higher level. I LOVE this. Great class to give as well. Did you layer papers in your first piece? Both are FAB!

Liz Ness said...

Very cool...PLUS, I just got the Somerset Studio Artful Blogging book. So cool! Love your article and the pieces (so great to be able to hold them and see them up close). Congratulations!

Laura said...

Kerri- These are gorgeous! You've done a wonderful job. I've taught alot of beeswax classes and I'd never know these were your 1st try.
Laura J

Marilyn Rock said...

Love your beeswax project Kerri! Just beautiful and the wall hanging is such a great idea. You are amazing.'re even in the Schenectady Gazette with honorable mention for your photo!! Ya know I saw that photo in the paper, awhile ago, and instantly thought of Max and Avery; isn't that funny? WOWSER! Just terrific!

Nancy Bea said...


Shona Cole said...

these are awesome. i have an unopened package of beeswax, you have inspired me to dive in.