Sunday, June 5, 2016

like alchemy...

"my work
is like a dialogue
between me and 
unseen powers,
like alchemy.'
-cai gua-qiang


delving into unknown territory today...  first "what if" was to rust dye in layers.  wrapped my salvage fragment around the band from an old whiskey cask to dye a large, summer moon.  once dyed, i dunked the fragment back into the vinegar water and then stretched it out on a plastic sheet and laid the metal tree cut out on it, smoothing the wet cloth gently to remove wrinkles and distortions, then carefully folded the fragment back onto itself to get the second tree image rusted in....all the while, being meticulous in keeping any part of the cloth off of the moon so as not to accidentally transfer the first image back into an unwanted area of the cloth.

i was very happy with my initial results...except that all this carefulness left the image a bit stark for my taste.  what to do? what to do?  okay....here's a thought...grab some of the rust mush from the bottom of the dunk tank and spread it around to create clouds and ground after another dip in the vinegar water!    i'm liking this so much better already.  only thing is...i have no idea how this will turn out.  i've never used rust mush to dye with before.  it's just the rusty flakings from the floorboard of my international that i dumped into the dunk tank to act as a rust starter.  it's black.  i don't know why.  but it is.  i don't know if it'll turn orange and rust like any other rusty metal. or if it will dye the fragment black or grey.  or if it will just sit there stubbornly. sticking its tongue out at me and do nothing to color the cloth.  i shall just have to wait and see what happens tomorrow...  isn't it exciting?!?

namaste'

8 comments:

  1. I am soooo jealous of your rusting! Exciting to say the least ... I cant wait to see what happens next. A new happy adventure for sure!
    regards, jeannie

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    1. it is such an interesting departure from what has become "traditional" rust dyeing, that i sometimes feel like a giddy child! wide eyed and full of hopeful expectations!

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  2. Ahhh ... I like the two colors. Like lead and gold ...

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    1. yes, i do too...i hope it stays that way. but you never know with old metals...

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  3. OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! And lucky you with the plasma cut shapes--wondrous possibilities.

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    1. ha! indeed, i count myself quite lucky!

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  4. Loving the tree shapes!
    Wire wool gives interesting textural shapes too
    as an alternative to the rust mush lol

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    1. oooh! i've used that...just hadn't been thinking along those lines. will definitely play with it in that direction at some point!

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