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Crayon Resist

resources index > lesson plans > CRAYON RESIST < art history

The People of Africa Batik
The People of Africa Batik

A resist is a pattern or design made by applying a color wash over a wax line drawing made with a crayon or candle on a ground material such as paper or fabric. Wherever the wax has been applied, the paint or dye will not stick to ground.

Fabric produced by wax-resist dyeing on textile is called batik. The word batik is from Java; countries in Africa and Asia are also known for wax resist fabrics.

Crayon resist is a relatively simple way to explore the concept of wax resist - wax crayons do not have to be heated, the paint is not hot like most dyes, and there is no need to use heat or solvents to remove the wax from the paper.

Supplies- construction paper, pencil, white crayon or wax candle, black tempera paint or other colors that complement the design, containers for water, large brush, newspapers to protect work surface, smock to protect clothing.

Prepare a gallery of examples of crayon resist techniques with your own work (which prepares you understand the opportunities and limitations of each kind of crayon resist) and wax resist artwork from around world.

scribbles 1

Choose a light color construction paper. If you choose to sketch in the design, do so lightly so the pencil does not leave an indentation. Trace over the sketch with a white wax crayon or wax candle and make wide and narrow lines to create variation and visual interest.

Wash over the paper with black or dark color tempera paint. The wax will resist the liquid and allow the previously difficult to see image to emerge from the background.

scribbles 3

Or use a multicolored tempera wash to match the subject.-
blues and greens for an underwater scene for instance.

Young children could use the scribble exercise to experiment with the crayon resist work.

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