Deb Ward, GWS, OWS, PWS, WSI - WATERCOLOR/WATER MEDIA - My passion is teaching adult “beginners”. Weekly classes in my home; workshops; classes for Cincinnati Recreation Commission. My work is nationally recognized and published - see “Featured” on my sidebar. I’m a Signature Member of Georgia, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Indiana state Watercolor Societies, Cincinnati Art Club, past-President of Greater Cincinnati Watercolor Society. Contact info below under “Class Information”

Monday, August 17, 2009


The red stripes have been waxed and the blue background (French ultramarine and indanthrone) has been painted in. I liked the area where the red had bled into the background – happy accident! I think it made more unity in the painting.

As you can see, I use a styrofoam plate for my palette when working in this technique.

After the blue dried, I applied the wax to any portion of the painting that was uncovered. After all of the wax was dry I crumpled the painting so that the wax broke apart. You might want to do this step holding your painting directly over a wastebasket!

Rather than using Sumi-E ink as some artists do, I mix up a dark, or black, with my watercolor paints. For this particular piece I used Maimeri Terra D ‘Ombra (burnt umber), Winsor Newton raw umber and Rembrandt Brun Van Dyck (Van Dyke brown), each mixed with some Daniel Smith Indanthrone.
Then I take an old brush and “smoosh” that dark paint into the cracks in the wax. And, did I mention it’s messy? You can see the wax floating in the water. (See why I say use OLD BRUSHES!)

After applying the dark or black paint, I lay tissues over the painting to mop up any extra paint that lays on top of the wax. (It makes me think of “101 Dalmations”!)

Here is the finished piece.
I adhered the painting to my canvas and turned 3 sides under. I then tore the last side to make it look like the flag was old and tattered. I sprayed several coats of Krylon matte over the flag.
This was just an idea I came up with, and the person who purchased the piece can certainly turn under that right side and frame it in a standard frame, or leave it as is – blowing in the wind!

Now – I’ll make you play the game – how does this painting incorporate the theme of seven???

The Veteran, 12x20, watercolor batik on rice paper (SOLD)


RHCarpenter said...

Well, I see 7 stripes and 7 stars and maybe it took you 7 hours to complete? ha ha

Cindi said...

wow it turned our scrumptious!!! love how the last little bit of dark antiqued the whole flag!! and no im not doing this. YEY.. still figuring out the miskit thingy!!! LOL

ok my guess on the game... 7 stars, 7 stripes and it took you 7 hours??? lol

thanks for sharing, it was fun watching!!

Vicki Greene said...

I am awful with games but I really like that flag. What a creative finish.

Gaylynn said...

7 stars/7stripes
What a neat idea.I like the wave of the flag off the canvas.

debwardart said...

You are correct with 7 stripes and 7 stars - but don't know if it took 7 hours (I don't normally keep track of that!)
Vicki and Gaylynn - just had this idea (and I'm not usually this creative, tend to do WYSIWYG paintings, but this just called for something different).

Nancy Van Blaricom said...

Thanks Deb, Great demo...this looks like so much fun ... maybe I'll get together with some like minded friends to give this a try. Love it!!

Deb Léger said...

What a beautiful painting! I just have to try this out with the Canadian flag - since I *am* Canadian! I'll let you know how it turns out. Beautiful, beautiful!!!

Deb Léger said...

Forgot to add - thanks very much for posting these pics showing the process! When reading about the process, it's difficult to imagine it if you haven't seen it done. If I was closer, I'd be a regular at all your workshops!

Ginny Stiles said...

Oh my gosh, Deb...this is so lovely. How did you come to sell it so quickly? Did you put it up on line or show it at local show or something? I like that your technique with the wax is a little different than Sandy Maudlin's but similar. The finish is so creative and I've never seen anything quite like it! Amazing.
You go girl.

debwardart said...

Nancy - it's fun with more because you all get to see the "surprise" finished product of everyone else! And you can keep the mess at one person's house (preferably NOT yours - ha, ha). Let me know how it works out.
Deb - please let me see your flag when it is finished. Wish you were closer too!
Ginny - gee thanks! It sold at our GCWS show in May.

Deb Léger said...

Can I ask what kind of rice paper you used for this, Deb?

debwardart said...

Rice paper used was unryu - you can also use kinwashi (medium to heavy weight). These can be found online (Daniel Smith, Jerry's or ASW) and perhaps in an art store near you, usually with any decorative papers they carry.