Easter is here. And as this celebration of spring is celebrated very vehemently in our family I decided to share all the stuff with you. This is a series of posts describing pagan czech traditions that stayed in the minds of people even after the christianization and keep being part of every spring in the Czech Republic.
In my last post I told you about coloring eggs by onion skins. That technique is very handy when you want a more interesting background for your wax painting so check it out if you haven´t done so until now.
Vosková technika – The wax technique
The wax painting is a simple technique you can try at home and with a little practice you can master it. It is a very old technique used in many of our regions. I am going to show you one way of decorating eggs by wax, but there are many others. Next year I might try to show you another one. The one I am going to show you is pretty simple.
My memories of first trying this as a child are quite the same as memories of first trying to write. Your work is not very good, you dont know how to go straight, how to make the long pretty lines your mum is using and all the older girls have it prettier than you.
Then after some years of practicing (you have to take into count that one is decorating eggs just one day in a whole year so it practically takes years to train it properly) your eggs start to be really pretty and you are very proud of them. So try this technique, practice and enjoy!
What you need for painting
1. eggs – you obviously cannot go without them
2. bee wax – you will need a very little piece of this product
3. wax crayons – choose the colors you like, czech eggs are made in all colors, even though the traditional colors will forever be white, red and black
4. pencil – or a wooden stick, but pencils are made in the right size for this
5. pin – take the thin pins with small heads for narrow lines and the big glass heads for wider lines (those are my favourites)
6. candle – choose the right one acording to your ways of warming the wax
7. something to warm the wax in – this can be an old aroma-lamp (see the photos), or you can use a pile of books into which you stick an old soup spoon (that way we were doing it at a school in art classes)
What to do first
Light your candle inside the aroma-lamp or under the spoon. Put a little piece of bee wax and a little piece of wax crayon inside and wait for it to melt. The mixture should be the right color you wish to use, the wax is in it for a more sparkling color.
Meanwhile prepare your drawing instrument. Take the pencil and stick the pin inside the end of it. Voilá, you are prepared.
Since this moment watch out, everything will be hot, so don´t touch anything else than the eggs and the pencil.
How to paint the egg
The decors are made from two basic shapes – a line and a dot. The dot is simple to make, you just put your pin into the wax and dot the egg. The line is made by dotting the egg (wait there for a millisecond for the wax to make a small dot first) and scratching it in the direction you wish the line to be leading to. This may take you some time to master, try it on a piece of paper first.
As soon as you can do this you are unstoppable.
The decors usually used are swallows, flowers, fish, grass, sun and corn. These all are connected by geometrical decors like lines and spirals.
To get the right dose of inspiration type KRASLICE VOSK into google (painted easter eggs and wax). We use a collection of postcards at home for the same reason.
To see a lady painting on egg shell on video visit this link.
Whats is coming next
If you are interested in different ways of decorating eggs or egg shells wait for my next post about our collection of egg shells we have been making for years. Please do like or follow if you like what you read.