Batik is an ancient process of dying fabric, using molten wax as a resist, to create complex multi colored patterns or images on fabric. In recent years artists like myself have begun to explore batik as a fine art medium. I try to stay true to the original method, diverging in subject matter and by using the tools in a sketchier, less precise manner.
My batiks reflect my love a love of wild places, quiet intimate spots where I feel at peace and connected to the pulse of nature. The natural beauty of randomness in nature has regularly been a subject of my batiks. Inspired by reading Bartram’s Travels I often locate and visit places he mentions in the book as an opportunity to explore more of North Florida. I document my own discoveries with a camera, translating them to batiks in the studio. This ongoing personal project has led me to many beautiful remote areas, with a long list of places still explore.
I focus on translating the patterns and textures of nature thru batik. Much of the process has to be carefully planned and involves numerous layers of dye and wax. The dyes are transparent, I must work in reverse, beginning with the lightest color. Each color builds onto earlier layers that have not been sealed with wax. Many of my batiks have 20-30 layers of dye. Capturing light and shadow is often exaggerated by the crude tools used to lay down hot wax, and are part of the charm in batik images.
I really love the element of surprise at the end when the final darkest dye dip completes the image—often in surprising ways.