KEIGHLEY Art Club members were engrossed at their latest meeting by a unique artistic approach, encaustic wax art.

Sandy Smith brought coloured wax, specialist paper, examples of her own work, a waxing iron and books on about her art.

For anyone interested, the two books by Michael Bosson are published by Search Press, but others may well be found on the Internet.

The book Encaustic Wax is semi-technical and the second book provides projects in encaustic wax that artists can follow.

More experienced wax artists can also buy stylist pens with varying sizes of nibs, card, flat irons, wax blocks, rubber stamps and ink, from local craft shops and garden centres.

However new starters could try using children’s wax crayons with photographic paper, although the paper could blister.

Sandy started by demonstrating how to melt and apply the wax. She fashioned the melted material swiftly and deftly, displaying her life-long interest in the wax medium, before it could dry.

Intricate shapes, landscapes and flowers appeared before our eyes in the scraping of her flat iron.

Each of us was then supervised in producing individual efforts. It was most interesting to see that although we have never used this form previously, we were able to produce a decent picture under Sandy’s guidance.

It was good to have a break from watercolours, acrylics and pastels.

Strangely yet instantly, colours could be mixed outright on to the paper to produce secondary colours such as green, orange and purple, in different shades to the standard tones.

Accuracy in depicting objects was reasonably good, as none of us had ever attempted to use wax for painting before.

Textile trained, Sandy discovered encaustic wax at a demonstration in Scotland some time ago, and was immediately hooked on the subject.

She also produces mosaic and stained glass effects in this work.

If a loosener is needed, ordinary candle wax can be used. Sandy showed us how.

She kept the wax blocks and her flat iron clean between colour changes, as with all mediums.

You can let the melted wax run to the top of the iron, but don’t press on when applying 8 to good quality paper.

When dry, you can buff your painting lightly with a duster to create sheen.

One of the final stages was to show us how to make creative patterns by using plant leaves. This gives an unusual texture.

Our current programme will have two more outside demonstrators, which is unusual.

Non-members are welcome, and pay £4. The two sessions are picture framing by Skipton Art Shop on May 13, and a gouache demonstration of a landscape cliff by Bruce Malachy on May 27.

Keighley for your Tango Club member Rita Butterfield will bring a still life subject to paint on May 6, and our annual general meeting is on May 20.

All sessions are at Keighley Healthy Living in Scott Street, on the dates shown from 6.45pm to 8.45pm. Simply go along, or call Barbara Klempka on 01535 669914 during the evenings with membership or other queries.