Saturday, August 16, 2014

Egg #5- Persian inspired goose egg

I've decided to create an egg with my version of a Persian- runner that is. I have seen eggs done with Persian medallions centered on the egg, and they are quite beautiful. I decided that I wanted to do something a bit different. I had seen several examples of eggs that seem to have a saddle back division with some sort of cloth with fringe on the bottom. There are usually two of them, and they are set on the egg opposing each other in different vertical directions. Two of my fellow egg artisans Amelia Randich and Luba Petrusha have identified this particular pattern as older one, and the cloth in fact is a ritual cloth or Rushnyk. Thank you both for your help! I decided that I liked that division, and that I would created a Persian runner, rather than a prayer cloth.

The first step is to dye the egg with PUSA peacock dye. Then I divided the egg in the traditional saddle back division. I calculated from the center of the runner how many courses wide I would need to make the pattern that I've chosen to make sense. I drew a small grid on either side of the vertical middle dividing line and brought my top runner to a point. I did the same for the opposing side and underbelly of the egg as well. Because of the complexity of my design, the runners ended up
 touching each other on the points on the side. In most other eggs with this design, there usually is an airspace between the two. I was okay with having them touch on the corners, rather than re-figure the math (lazy, I know).
I am starting to draw in more detail with my mechanical .05 pencil (2H lead), doubling up lines, drawing braided tassels on the points of the runners and flowers within each of the tessellated compartments within the runner (repetitive interlocking designs).
Now I start waxing over the pencil outline of the runner with a fine kitska tip. I plan on etching soon after, so I will save the extra fine tip for later.
I've now added stems to the flowers that reside in the compartments, as well as the stamens.
I switch over to my extra fine kitska and outline the leaves.
I continue to wax the veins in the leaves and tendrils, as well as the segments within the borders and finish up the tassels. After, I dye into the next darkest dye, PUSA Patina. I wax in the inside of all leaves and the border of the runner, and the tassels.
Onto a quick dip in Acid Magic, and a gentle scrub with the original Mr. Clean Magic Eraser. I then mix a slurry of baking soda and water and gently scrub onto the egg, neutralizing the acid and polishing the egg. I let the egg rest for approximately 30 minutes to close the pores back up. Then a quick dip into vinegar and a quick dip into PUSA Shocking pink.
Now to start waxing in the petals on the stamen.
This is slow going. It has taken a lot of patience to wax every petal on each three- stemmed flower. And turn it over to it's opposing side and do it all over again.
Next, a dip into UGS red, and wax over some of the compartments. I will use four colors for this, so I am paying close attention to a repeating color sequence, but also notice a pattern when I do this. Visually, it was easier than writing down the courses and which color comes next when all four courses are not visible on the egg. Can we say "Right Brain"? I know some of you know what I mean! The next color dye bath is UGS Dark Red. I wax over those sections as well.
Say what? How did we and why did we get back to white? Answer? Cold water rinse with a "Simple Green Cleaner" spray. Rinse well and let rest 30 minutes. Why? The next color courses are blues, and if I had dyed over the dark red, well, I would have probably gotten a dark purple/black. I want a light blue and a navy blue, and the final color, black.
See how nice and vibrant the UGS light blue is on a back-to-white egg? That's what I'm talking about, people! I wax over those compartments. Two more colors to go and we're done! Next step, dye the egg with PUSA darkest blue, wax over that, and than UGS black as the final color, and wax over the entire egg.
Here is what it looks like all waxed over. Now to unwax in the oven.
I place the egg on a cardboard drink holder lined with paper towels. I rub a little olive oil on the egg to help the wax "slip" off.  I place it all on an old cookie tray and put it into a cold oven. The oven is set to 175 degrees and I close the door and walk away and let the oven do the work for me. I revisit the egg in approximately 10 minutes and wipe away the wax. I continue to return it to the oven, and take it out again until the egg no longer feels sticky.
And here is the finished egg. I am really pleased with the color combination and the overall design of the egg. And I have checked off a new division to try with my own spin on it.
The very last thing to do is to photograph it and give it a quick dip into a glossy varnish.
 I hope you have enjoyed this journey with me on this magic carpet ride!


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