We were working on Yupo (a plastic-like "paper") with watercolor and liquid acrylics. There's a heavy learning curve, and the process was incredibly frustrating. You should have heard us whine and groan! Here's the beginning of my first painting:
When this layer is completely dry, apply another layer of masking tape to protect the areas that should be light in color. Then, apply another layer of paint. Then another layer of tape to protect the mid-tones, followed by another layer of paint. Repeat as many times as you can stand.
The frustration comes from tearing all those itty-bitty pieces of tape and the fact that more and more of the painting is covered by layers of blue tape. After a couple of layers, it's impossible to tell what should be covered or painted next. Unfortunately, I didn't photograph the stage after the tape came off. What you end up with does indeed look like a batik print, with paint that has bled through the "cracks" created by the tape.
If you did a good job with your planning and taping and layering, the painting will be close to completed when the tape comes off. Me, I ended up painting maybe 80%. At the end of the all the hours and hours of work, this is what I was left with:
Sandy was honest with her students. This technique is tedious, frustrating, scary, and extremely time-consuming. But the end product has a texture you can't get any other way.
Will I ever paint another painting using this technique? I seriously doubt it! I'm not that much of a masochist. For good examples of what can be achieved using masking tape batik, see Sandy's blog.
Tomorrow, I will show you my second painting, which uses an entirely different technique.