Experimental batik on paper with Hetty Van Boekhout

Ref: SWE13408

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About this course

Create artwork and designs in resists of hot wax, dyes and bleach. As you experiment, make spontaneous images in batik and collage on various papers.

Course Description

On this course, batik skills and free creativity are combined to create wax resist paintings and objects. Batik techniques used on paper are very versatile and encourage experimentation. You can expect to make simple abstract designs with marks from brushes and a tjanting, which can be developed in further stages of applying layers of wax and dyes, until you achieve your desired final result. Explore the many possibilities with dye, bleach and melted wax on different qualities of paper. Using a viewfinder, you can choose a detail for a new composition, which is more spontaneous than following a given design and can create an artistic surprise. Details can be used as a starting point for a new piece of work; collage can be used as a way to create layers and shapes, which can be moved around to give an idea a better chance to develop without being forced. The waxed papers can be used in objects like making artists’ books and folders.

This working method is free, fast and playful, exploring beyond the limits of the traditional batik craft. These methods have been developed and explored by the tutor in her personal work over many years, following on from considerable experience in traditional batik on fabric.

The course will include:

• Experimenting with dye and bleach to create unforeseen and spontaneous images

• Collage of patterns with a variety of papers

• Wax printing on paper using a hot iron over waxed fabric

• Ideas for making objects, such as folders and cards, suitable for personal gifts


Arrival Day - this is the first date listed above

Courses start early evening. Residential students to arrive from 4pm, non-residential students to arrive by 6.45pm.

6.45pm: Welcome, followed by dinner (included).

8 - 9pm: First teaching session, attendance is essential.

Daily timetable

Classes 9.15 - 5pm, lunch is included.

From 6.30pm: Dinner (included for residential students).

Evening working - students may have access to workshops until 9pm, but only with their tutor's permission and provided any health and safety guidelines are observed.

Last day

Classes 9.15am - 3pm, lunch is included.

Residential students are to vacate their rooms by 10am please.

(This timetable is for courses of more than one day in length. The tutor may make slight variations)

Course Materials


  • Five sheets of cartridge paper, and three sheets of tissue paper are provided per student with the general materials including wax and dyes shared amongst the group.

What students need to bring

  • An apron and rubber gloves
  • Cheap household (bathroom) sponges for dyeing
  • Small glass jars for dyes
  • Any cheap brushes you may have for waxing and painting
  • Kitchen paper towel
  • References and ideas
  • Coloured tissue papers, if you have any
  • Tjantings (some available to borrow)
  • A hairdryer (some available to borrow)

Available to buy

  • Available from shop:
  • Coloured tissue paper
  • Cartridge papers and card
  • Unprinted newspaper (newsprint)
  • HB pencil
  • Drawing pins
  • Inexpensive brushes for waxing and brushes for painting on dye
  • Masking tape
  • Paraffin and batik wax

Additional information

Please wear appropriate clothing/aprons for the workshop or studio. This includes stout covered footwear, i.e. no open-toes or sandals, and safety boots, if specified.


Hetty Van Boekhout

Hetty Van Boekhout has worked as a batik artist for over 40 years. She studied art and design in Maastricht, textile art in Antwerp. She gives masterclasses in batik, in Europe and the USA.


Residential option available. Find out accommodation costs and how to book here.

Courses of interest

Further study options

Take the next step in your creative practice, with foundation level to Masters in Fine Art study. 

Depending on your experience, start with an Online Foundation Certificate in Art and Design (one year, part-time), a Foundation Diploma in Art and Design made up of 10 short courses taken over two years (part-time) or advance your learning with our BA (Hons) Art and Contemporary Craft: Materials, Making, and Place (six years part-time). All will help you develop core skills, find direction in your practice and build an impressive portfolio in preparation for artist opportunities or higher-level study. See all degree and diploma courses.