I love shiny stuff. Someone or some book or some spoken authority put it in my head that the reason we like bling or jewelry or otherwise shiny stuff is that water shines in the sunlight. That the sparkle may indicate securing things like water -has encoded in our DNA. I’ve had people argue this with me and perhaps they are right. All I know is I like my world to shine and be OCD clean. Being surrounded by order makes me feel so happy.
Reasons to make your own shellac are two-fold. 1) to understand how the world works. 2) To control the viscosity.
Like many things in the world it is surprisingly simple. The dementors have made it difficult for profit. Like cranberry sauce it is basically 50% to 50% rosin and denatured alcohol.
The above shows both the rosin in blocks as it comes and the bottom is what it looked like after I hit it with a wooden mallet. Not super necessary.
Then just pour the alcohol in a bottle and plop in the resin. Wait about 24 hours while it melters:
Here’s a sample fresh out of the oven!
Always Always Always make sure to label all solvents or chemicals you work with even for a second. You might think you will remember what they are but it doesn’t matter. That’s why I put ye ol Skull and cross bones. This is very safe to use and make. but make sure you know the nature of any solvents and chemicals you use and never be cavalier about their use.
The solvent for this is of course denatured alcohol but the resin is so sticky I only ever use chip brushes with it bc I’m not going to spend all day cleaning out cheap brushes- but if you do use brushes- no matter what you are painting with always soak your brush thoroughly in the material’s solvent and save clean-up time by 80%