Oh, my goodness. What fun! I have been rusting watercolor paper and experimenting with encaustics. For my first rust experiment I layered damp watercolor paper and metal washers and sprinkled some recycled tea over the paper and let it do its thing overnight. The results weren't bad. Then I decided to try using the whole tea bags sandwich between the layers of paper. Meanwhile on the bottom side I layed out some steel wool fibers. Next morning... nothing. The tea bag part was pretty cool but no change in the steel wool. Humm... oh, add salt and vinegar! I put a tiny bit of epsom salts on the tea bag side along with a dribble of vinegar and wow. Things started happening. See the 3rd picture. I think perhaps the best part is what happened to the paper towel I was using to hold in the moisture overnight (bottom images). What color!!
strip #1 - just the tea bags
strip #2 - metal washers and tea sprinkles
strip #3 - the encaustic experiment with sumi-e ink, watercolor and beeswax
strip #1 - black and white swirl - more encaustics
strip #2 - rusty washer rings and tea sprinkles
strip #3 - whole tea bags, epsom salt and vinegar (stuff bleed through from the back experiment?)
Close up of the tea bag, salt, & vinegar
This strip was the steel wool, vinegar and epsom salts experiment
Close ups of the rusted steel wool on watercolor paper
and below the paper towel.
Don't you think a trip to the metal scrap yard is in order?