Friday, April 22, 2016

Celebrate Earth Day with StencilGirl + Earth Safe Finishes

Time for another Blog Hop and this time we are teaming up with the lovely people from Earth Safe Finishes.  Seems like the perfect way to celebrate Earth Day, doesn't it?
Nancy Burkhart of Earth Safe, has developed paints and mediums that are free of the toxins and solvents normally present in many of the products we artists use. 
I worry about toxins, especially when I am working with wax products. The need for ventilation is so pertinent I won't work with wax unless the room is properly ventilated.  
So imagine how excited I was when I discovered that Nancy has a product that is a substitute for Cold Wax! And she has pigments that can sub in for the oil sticks I typically use. Zero smell, zero toxins.

Follow along to see how I used these products.

1. I took a sheet of Arches Oil paper and cut it into a 9"x9" square. Using blue painter's tape, I taped off around the edges and taped off a cross shape through the center. That left me with four working square areas, which I treated as one piece.

2. Using Licorice Chalk Paint, I scraped some random marks across my substrate.

3. Truth be told, I couldn't wait to play with the pigments so I immediately opened them and put a few drops (they are intense!) on my palette. The colors are gorgeous and so highly pigmented that you really only need a couple drops, wow oh wow! This is a pretty unusual product - to find pigment in a liquid form, I'm not familiar with another company who makes this. I have certainly used powdered pigments before, but you need to wear a mask because the particles go airborne; these liquids are so darn convenient. You can add them to any of your mediums to create colorful versions of, say molding paste or texture medium or clear tinted gel. Or in my case, Cold Wax!
4. Next I opened up the wax. It wasn't what I was expecting, I thought it would be, well, more obviously waxy I suppose. It is fairly liquid, kind of runny yogurt consistency. And a creamy color. ZERO odor. I kid you not. It was unbelievable, absolutely no smell in these products. I put some wax on my palette and mixed it with the droplets of pigment. 
5. And finally I started to paint. This was all palette knife and skewer work (no brushes) and naturally several stencils jumped in, ha!! 
Since the wax itself is so fluid, I simply used my regular sponge to pounce it through the stencil. The Quinacridone Violet is a simply glorious color. That is it on top of the yellow (full strength) and mixed with some white in the foreground (see below). 

6. Here is my final piece after I peeled the tape away. I just love how it turned out. 
I want to spend some more time playing with these products, they have a lot of interesting potential I want to explore. And here's the thing - these days we are assaulted with toxic ingredients in every part of our life; it is really wonderful for a company to take the time to figure out other ways of manufacturing and to make safe products for artists. Kudos, Nancy!
And guess what? You can win my art. All you have to do is visit the blogs showcased today through Wednesday and leave a comment. The more blogs you comment on, the more chances you have to WIN this one of a kind, 9x9 inch Cold Wax painting on Arches Oil Paper made by me.
One comment per blog please. You will have until Monday, April 25th at 11:59 p.m. Central Time to leave your comments.

The winner of Stencil Girl's give-away will be announced on StencilGirl's Facebook page on Wednesday, April 27th.

Here are the links to the other posts:


  1. Wow! So excited by your description of these products. Beautiful piece Mary Beth. ldobry6 at gmail dot com

  2. Wow! So excited by your description of these products. Beautiful piece Mary Beth. ldobry6 at gmail dot com

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

    1. Forgot my email mcsuetexas at yahoodotcom Ive tried hot wax Really excited about cold wax And finding more earth friendly products is really exciting.

  4. I envy the lucky winner!

  5. Gorgeous painting, Mary Beth!!
    Both products sound fun to combine in artwork!
    So glad you're on the hop! :)

  6. Great work! Love the palette and the smart use of the stencils!
    Chana Malkah
    Earth Safe Finishes, DT

  7. Love the deep,dark, mysterious colours.

  8. This is a wonderful project! Love how you used the stencils!

  9. Great job. I love how you used the stencil with the paint and the colors.

  10. I too, think you did a Great job with this abstract painting. I love how you used the stencil with the paint and the colors. thanks for chance to win one of the paintings. sakortan at gmail dot com

  11. I love your piece Mary Beth. I have never used cold wax so I have to try it. The colors are just wonderful. And I can play cause I have these stencils too.

  12. Oh this piece is really the different stencils

  13. Whew! I think (and hope) I've visited the blog of every artist in this wonderful hop! If I missed any, it was by accident! :-)

  14. Love your use of the stencils - really interesting!!!

  15. This is a wonderful piece, I love your ART. I am so glad that you had a chance to play with Earth Safe Finishes product, they truly are amazing!!

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  17. This is breathtaking! Love the colors.

    amfowlerbv (at)gmail (dot com)

  18. Mary Beth you never fail to amaze me. Your art is always breath taking thank you for sharing and offering this giveaway. ghoagland(at) msn (dot com)

  19. Great Job..Thanks for sharing

  20. I love this piece. The products sound really interesting. Carolef (at) blueyonder (dot co dot UK)

  21. Mary Beth, just beautiful. The colors just seem to float in the page. I never would have considered using cold wax but I think I'm going to give it a try now that you've shown us how to use them!

  22. Great job, love how you used Earth Safe Finishes with the stencils.

  23. I absolutely LOVE this piece! So cool... and now I really want to try working with cold wax!

  24. WOW! Great piece Mary Beth. Will have to check out these products. Thanks.


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