If this looks a bit scary - it is! This is the painted piece totally covered with wax and the wax cracked by crumpling the silk. I then paint dye over the whole thing and the dye sinks into the cracks in the wax. This part is quite unpredictable since it's hard to see exactly what you're doing - it's always a leap of faith. Slightly scary but I love the extra organic texture the cracking gives.
Here most of the wax has been removed by ironing off onto newsprint. The remaining wax is still obscuring some of the color nuances in the darker areas. These will become more apparent as more of the wax comes off when I steam-set the dyes. I'm going to delay steaming this one till I've done a second painting, so I can steam both at the same time.