Batik Making

Batik Making

It would be impossible to visit Indonesia and not be exposed to one of the country’s most highly developed art forms, batik, a traditional form of painting on fabric. Craftspeople painstakingly use dots and lines from wax to decorate the cloth – a delicate process which is quite impressive to watch.

The most famous center for Balinese Batik hand weaving is Tohpati Village. This village is widely known for handmade Balinese batik in myriad colors and shapes. Here visitors can observe first-hand the Batik making and hand weaving process.

Traditional Balinese Batik is recognized by strong Javanese motifs, but modern designs apply more images of Balinese culture, ceremonies, culturally rich sites and mythological Hindu figures.

Widya’s Batik Workshops

Yogyakarta – born Widya offers batik instruction just north of Ubud for individuals or in a group workshop format with all materials provided. He can pick you and your imagination up at your Ubud accommodation.

Widya offers daily classes from 10am to 5pm for Rp 350,000 per student with a one day reservation. One class enables you to make a small batik painting. To produce larger pieces, you can choose a 3 day class. For further details e-mail yogawidya@hotmail.com.

Widya practices various kinds of Batik, such as:

Batik Tulis: Batik waxed by a hand process known as ‘’batik tulis’’,  the original way of creating batik.

Chanting: The tool used to apply wax in fine lines is called a ‘’chanting’’. A chanting tool consists of two parts, the handle which is made from bamboo and the front spout which is made of copper.

Stamping: A method later developed in Java, stamping is another way to apply wax by hand or combined with ‘’batik tulis’.  Mass produced batiks are often made with the help of machine stampers.

Dye and Color: Unlike in many batik studios which use chemically-based dyes, all of the dyes used in Widya’s batik studio are organic, specially made from plants, flowers, vegetables and minerals.  Some of Widya’s color is ‘’light-activated’’, stabilizing and changing to it’s true color in the sun. Other colors change to their true color in the finishing process.

Boiling: When the dyes are set, the batik is boiled to remove the wax. After the boil the piece is washed in clean water, it then dried to reveal the beauty and originality of the batik.

Nirvana Batik Workshops

I Nyoman Suradnya with his son Tuadi and apprentices pass on their knowledge and enthusiasm to students attending their batik courses at their studio in Ubud’s center.   Nirvana offers classes from 10am to 2pm Monday to Saturday.

One/two day course; Rp 485 000 per person, per day, including

  • Brief introduction to the ‘’story’’ of batik
  • The materials and tools used
  • The techniques for painting with canting and brush
  • Hand color & dip dying in ¾ color
  • Dying sequence
  • Wax removal
  • Finishing touch for final product

Three/four day course; Rp 470 000 per person, per day, including the above plus;

  • Expanded knowledge of types of wax and effects that can be created (eg. wax & cracking)
  • More variation of color through hand painting and dip dying
  • Wider use of tools (large, small spout cantings)
  • Working on 2 pieces of work to utilize a variety of techniques

 Five day course; Rp 450 000 per person, per day

Includes both of the above, but allows the student to experience more independently using the knowledge gained in the first three days to be more creative – yet still under the teacher’s  guidance.

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