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Wednesday, March 4, 2020

Alternative Cold Wax Paint Formulation

Many artists employ 'cold wax' mixed mediums in their expressive work.
The commercial cold wax formulations contain resin ( i.e. dammar gum) along with beeswax and solvent. When mixed with an oil-based paint ( to various ratios of cold wax : paint) , the formulation can be applied to various foundations.

In my approach to a cold wax formulation, I took a commercial watercolor paint (from tube) , diluted with a small amount of water and added drops of the commercial non-ionic surfactant 'tergitol' ( Sigma-Aldrich) . I then added varying amounts of a water-based commercial car wax ( Mother's Carnuaba) and blended well. After mixing well, I added a 20% (mass/mass) solution of dammar gum in linseed oil. After 2-3 minutes of stirring, the paint formulation was applied with brush to bristol paper.  The paint was dry to the touch in 30 minutes.

Shown: a commercial watercolor (tube) manufactured in China, Tergitol surfactant ( Sigma-Aldrich), 'Mother's California Golden' water-based car wax and paint swatch.

I am currently studying various surfactants including 'Tergitol', Span 60 ( Sigma-Aldrich) and soy lecithin. Will a wide range of commercial watercolor pigments work with this proposed mixed mediums formulation?


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