there is a day in my graduate training that sticks out for me – it’s the day i went to the studio of one of my most inspiring mentors, mimi farrelly-hansen. she showed me and a few of my colleagues a really relaxing art activity – using a warming tray to draw with crayons.
this process is great for relaxation and stress relief, as the crayons just move so freely and softly across the warming tray as they are melting… it is soooo addictive – (really, i’m warning you!) i recently bought a warming tray just for this purpose, but i got the cheapest one i could find and it does not have a setting for low or high heat. it’s always running on a pretty hot temperature, thus N can’t do this activity with me just yet. i wanted to post it for those of you with children who would be able to understand safety around using a warming tray – use your judgement about your own child, and always supervise children around a warming tray.
there are a couple of ways to engage in this activity. over the years, i’ve found that finger painting paper is my favorite paper to use because of its glossy quality, though other papers work just fine. metallic crayons are fabulous for this exercise, but any old crayons will do. here i used non-metallics primarily, with some silver and gold in there.
you can lay the paper directly onto a warming tray on low heat, and draw on it right there with peeled crayons. it’s luscious.
another thing you can do is line the tray with foil (when cool, before you turn it on) and draw on the foil. then do some print-making my pressing papers onto the design you’ve created.
the process is highly satisfying and results are always stunning with either method.
if you use the finger painting paper, the light shines through these so beautifully…
i made a few cards from some of the prints.
these really do make great sun-catchers… i made this butterfly as a gift for N, since she’s quite obsessed with chasing butterflies around our backyard (and has seriously almost gone through our screen door a few times in pursuit of the elusive yellow-swallowtail.)