In addition to making watercolor wood stains using my homegrown indigo I also made Maya blue paint. Maya blue is combing indigo pigment with a specific type of clay by heating it. The main reason it interests me is because by combining the indigo pigment with a clay, the clay shields the pigment and makes it much more lightfast and stable.
Above, sepiolite and my own homegrown indigo pigment extracted from dried indigo leaves.
I bought the sepiolite and used instructions from Natalie Stopka.
Here is the indigo and clay mixed together.
And here it is heating in a pan on the stove. You can see how it is darkening around the edges.
Then after five minutes, it was all darkened and the color was no longer spotted and mottled. Almost done.
After cooling fully, I ground it down once again in the mortar and pestle and added 1 grams honey and 10 grams Acacia tree sap (gum arabic).
Above are two batches I made using different batches of indigo, showing both plain pigment watercolors and maya blue watercolors made from the same dry pigment. The second time I spent more time grinding down the clay before adding the indigo pigment and I think that made a cleaner maya blue. Then again, that was using the better more saturated indigo pigment to begin with so not sure.
All of these look gorgeous on wood, which of course is my end goal for them.
I've closed comments on this blog as I don't have time to check them and was getting slammed with spam comments. You can connect with me via instagram Amber_Dusick and I'm happy to answer questions there.