Saturday, October 31, 2015

New Work in Graphite and Conservator's Wax

I've turned to a new technique recently.  These pieces are made with graphite and conservator's wax, an acid free paste wax normally used for cleaning and polishing. The process involves not only scraping back to the bare Claybord, but adding more layers of graphite and wax, then scraping again.  Although I've mainly used a mini box cutter for the scraping, some of these effects are achieved with a waxy rag, cotton swabs, sandpaper, and steel wool.  In order to add traces of colour, I've also used touches of egg tempera, pigment mixed with wax, and brown shoe polish. 

These pieces will be available for purchase at Village Studios in Stratford, Ontario, from November 21, when I'll be having a two-person exhibition of new small works with Matthew Tarini


Landscape #1
graphite, conservator's wax, and egg tempera on Claybord, 8 x 10"  SOLD

Landscape #2
graphite, conservator's wax, and egg tempera on Claybord, 8 x 10" SOLD

 Heron
graphite, conservator's wax, egg tempera, and shoe polish on Claybord, 5 x 7" SOLD

 Modesty
graphite, conservator's wax, pigment, and shoe polish on Claybord, 12 x 12"

 Sheep
graphite, conservator's wax, and iridescent silver pigment on Claybord, 12 x 12" SOLD

 Rabbit
graphite, conservator's wax and shoe polish on Claybord, 12 x 12" SOLD

 Tree near the Thames Source
graphite, conservator's wax and shoe polish on Claybord, 5 x 7"  SOLD

 Tree Swallow
graphite, conservator's wax, pigment and shoe polish on Claybord, 7 x 5"  SOLD

 Mouse
graphite, conservator's wax and shoe polish on Claybord, 1 11/16 x 2 1/8"  SOLD

 Wittenham Clumps
graphite, conservator's wax, and egg tempera on Claybord, 2 1/4 x 2 1/4"  SOLD

In Wytham Woods
graphite, conservator's wax, and egg tempera on Claybord, 2 1/4 x 2 1/4"  SOLD

Landscape #3 (near Kelmscott)
graphite, conservator's wax, and egg tempera on Claybord, 1 7/16 x 3 15/16"  SOLD

Bridge on the Thames
graphite, conservator's wax, egg tempera, and shoe polish on Claybord, 8 x 10"

 Landscape #4
graphite and conservator's wax on Claybord, 5 1/2 x 14"

Hilly Landscape
graphite, conservator's wax, and egg tempera on Claybord, 8 x 10"  SOLD

Oxford Night
graphite, conservator's wax, and egg tempera on Claybord, 5 1/2 x 10 3/4  SOLD

 Beech Tree
graphite, conservator's wax, and egg tempera on Claybord, 11 x 14" SOLD

 Church Street
graphite, conservator's wax, and egg tempera on Claybord, 10 x 8"  SOLD

 Vine
graphite, conservator's wax, and shoe polish on Claybord, 7 x 5" SOLD

Landscape with Tree: Rain Coming
graphite, conservator's wax, and egg tempera on Claybord, 8 x 10"

 Rooves
graphite, conservator's wax, egg tempera, and shoe polish on Claybord, 8 x 8"  SOLD

Landscape with Path
graphite, conservator's wax, egg tempera, and shoe polish on Claybord, 8 1/4 x 11" 
Donated to I Love My Gallery Auction, Gallery Stratford

 Goldfinch
graphite, conservator's wax, and egg tempera on Claybord, 4 x 4"  SOLD

 Baby Robin
graphite, conservator's wax, and egg tempera on Claybord, 4 x 4"  SOLD

Quince
graphite, conservator's wax, and egg tempera on Claybord, 5 x 7"   SOLD

 Skeleton of a Baby Gorilla
graphite and conservator's wax on Claybord, 14 x 5 3/8" SOLD

 Teri's Garden
graphite and conservator's wax on Claybord, 8 x 10"  SOLD

Indigo Bunting
graphite, conservator's wax, and pigment on Claybord 5 x 7"  SOLD

3 comments:

Tatiana said...

These are incredible. I would love to hear more about this technique! I'm having a hard time picturing what the wax and scraping achieve. Is it basically painted on to resist the graphite, then scraped of and repainted elsewhere? Like masking in watercolor? Does any wax remain in the final piece, or is it all removed?

Whatever it is, you've done it brilliantly.

Leslie Watts said...

Hi, Tatiana.

Great questions. The conservator's wax is a paste wax. I apply it with a rag and use it to blend the graphite. So it does, indeed, stay on the final piece. It can also be used to soften the edges and remove the graphite if I discover I've put too much on. It's basically just another medium that mixes with the graphite. It also binds any dry pigment to the panel so that colour can blend with the graphite.

I'll try to post some photos of work in progress over the next few days so you can have an illustrated view of this answer!

All the best,
Leslie

Tatiana said...

Thank you, that would be fantastic!