ICARUS DRAWING BOARD FAQs
The Icarus Board technique is based on the principle that when a wax-based drawing medium is exposed to heat, it becomes softer or even melts. When returned to room temperature, it quickly solidifies. The Icarus Drawing Board is a portable drawing board featuring two working zones, a warm zone and a cool zone. By shifting the artwork between the two zones, the artist can take full advantage of the intrinsic properties of wax-based media. In general, the warm zone is used for mixing pigments, blending, burnishing and reworking. The cool zone is used for line drawing, detailing and finishing touches. The Icarus Drawing Board is just a tool; it won't teach you how to draw but it will add a new and exciting dimention to your drawing experience. Burnishing, blending and reworking will be easier to accomplish. Artists continuously find unique and creative ways of using the board depending on their style, level of expertise, medium or combination of mediums, surfaces and so on. There are so many variables it would be impossible for us to list them all.
For what type of media is it recommended?
All wax based drawing media are ideal for the Icarus Drawing Board technique. The main categories are: wax based colored pencils, wax based crayons and pastels, oil pastels and encaustics. These can be found on the market under different generic names:
For specific brand name recommendations, please contact us.
How does it work with colored pencils?
Colored pencils are the hardest of the wax-based drawing media. Even the softest ones contain a relatively small amount of wax in comparison to artist crayons or oil pastels. For this reason, the effect of heat on colored pencils becomes noticeable only when the surface is almost saturated with waxy pigments.
(Sometimes colored pencil leads are extruded first and then immersed in molten wax. When these colored pencils are exposed to heat, their leads crumble as soon as the outer layer of wax melts).
What kind of surfaces can I use?
Any support material that would normally be used for wax-based drawing media is acceptable for the Icarus Drawing Board as long as it makes full contact with the glass (no cradled boards, no stretched canvases). Papers of any variety, from drawing to watercolor and pastel paper, boards such as illustration, museum, canvas or wood boards, fabric, glass, plexiglass and more can be used with the Icarus Drawing Board.
Do I need special tools?
There are only few tools that are necessary to implement this technique beyond the normal tools inherent to wax-based media (sharpeners, erasers, desk brush, etc). They are: cotton towels, colour shapers, art sponges and gray paper stumps.
What about wax bloom?
With any wax-based media, especially when applied heavily or burnished, the wax tends to rise to the surface and appear as a white haze. This can be easily remedied by wiping the surface with a soft cloth. The wax bloom will reform until the work is sprayed with fixative or varnished.
Will heat cause any warping?
The heat of the warm zone sometimes causes the support materials to lightly warp. This is not a lasting problem and will rectify itself when returned to room temperature. It is helpful to place the artwork overnight under a heavy book.
The Icarus Drawing Board technique is an encaustic-like method because it involves heat. It differs from traditional encaustic in several ways: the working temperature is lower, it applies mainly to wax-based drawing media, and both cool and warm techniques are equally important. The Icarus Drawing Board should not be confused with an encaustic hot plate. It is an actual drawing board that allows artists to work on its surface for hours on hand while resting their arms comfortably on the cool areas of the tempered glass.
What if I need more information?
Please check the Technique page first; the answer to most questions can be found there. On our YouTube Channel we have several hours of free instructions available including two full length workshop projects, slide shows, and introductory videos. New material is uploaded on a regular basis and more information is available through Ester's Blog
What is the size and weight of the Icarus Drawing Board?
The size of model 2026-65-1A is 20” x 26” x 1 ¾ “ and the net weight is about 15lb. Shipping weight is about 22lb.
The size of model 1420-50-1A is 14” x 20” x 1 ¾ “ and the net weight is about 9.5lb. Shipping weight is about 14lb.
Will it work outside the USA?
North America and some other countries operate on 110/120V AC, 60Hz, while most of other countries operate on 220-240V AC, 50Hz. The Icarus Drawing Board is available only for 120V AC and will require a simple 100W step-down transformer to operate at 220-240V AC. A step-down transformers is easly found in local specialty stores or is available online. Please call us for more information.
Is it safe?
The heated portion of the board is an area of about 8”x 12” for the 2026 model and 6"x 9" for the 1420 model. All around this area and on the cool zone of the board the tempered glass remains at near room temperature. The Icarus Drawing Board is very safe when used appropriately. It is designed to reach temperatures warm enough for wax-based media to soften or melt but not so warm that it would cause users to inadvertently burn themselves. Even though the warm zone, at its maximum temperature, feels very warm to the touch, one would have to intentionally keep his/her hand directly on the hot glass to get hurt. Nevertheless please use common sense, read all instructions, and set the unit at a temperature that is comfortable for you.
Is it fragile?
The Icarus Drawing Board is built with a strong metal frame that supports a tempered glass top. As with any glass products, the glass can break if the unit is dropped or if a heavy object falls on it. Baring unfortunate accidents, the Icarus Drawing Board can operate for a very long time with minimum maintenance.
What if I need more information?
Please call or e-mail us at: [email protected]
How long will it take to receive my order?
Items in stock usually ship within 48 hrs. Arrival time in the US is generally 1 to 5 business days. For items not in stock the delivery time is about 3-4 weeks. We will provide an estimated ship date when you place your order. We will send you tracking numbers via e-mail as soon as they are available.
How will you ship my order?
We ship with FedEx Home Delivery and we offer two options: with signature or without signature. If you choose to sign at receipt, please make sure somebody is at home when the package is delivered. If you choose not to sign at receipt, FedEx will leave the package at your door if nobody is home.
Our system is set up to automatically accept orders only from the United States. For information on shipments outside the US please contact us and we’ll be happy to send you a quote that includes the shipping & handling charges to your address. Our quote will not include possible local sales taxes and custom duty; we recommend you get this information before placing the order. So far we have shipped internationally to: Canada, Germany, Italy, New Zealand, Australia, Tasmania,Brazil, Luxembourg, Japan, Venezuela, Belgium, Scotland, France, UK, Malaysia, Taiwan, Singapore, India, Hong Kong, and South Africa. Please remember that all our units operate at 120V. For countries with a different voltage you'll need a simple 100W, 220V--->110V step-down transformer. This is the only reason why our units are not warranted outside the USA and Canada.
What if my Icarus Drawing Board arrives damaged?
We pay particular attention to our packaging to reduce the chances of damage during shipping. However, in the event of damage, please save all original packaging and notify us. Damages must be noted on the delivery receipt and reported to us immediately. Concealed damage must be reported to us within 5 days of arrival. Pictures are required in the event of hidden damage. If the product is refused and damage is noted on the delivery receipt we will send a free replacement unit. If a replacement is declined and you would rather cancel your order, we will issue a refund. All refunds are less a 15% restocking fee and actual round trip shipping charges. We are not responsible for any damages not reported within 5 days of arrival.
What is your return policy?
Customer satisfaction is our top priority. If you are unsatisfied for any reason with your purchase, you can return it within 30 days of delivery. To return items for a refund please contact us via email or phone for an RMA (Return Merchandise Authorization). All returns are subject to round trip shipping charges and a 15% restocking fee. Returns are only accepted in their original boxes, and must be in a resalable condition.
How shall I clean it?
When performing any cleaning or maintenance to this unit, be sure to unplug it from the power outlet first, and allow it to cool. Do not immerse the unit or the plug in water. The most effective and safe way to clean the drawing board is with a damp cloth or paper towel. Do not allow liquids to spill or seep into frame.
What is your warranty?
Our products are warranted to be free from defects in material and workmanship, under normal use and service, for a period of one (1) year from the date of purchase. This warranty is extended only to the original purchaser and does not apply to accidental breakage, alteration, tampering, misuse or abuse, and unreasonable use. Lost or broken cord sets and the tempered glass top are not covered by this warranty. Warranty is applicable only in USA and Canada.
How do I get warranty service?
To obtain service at no charge during the warranty period call or e-mail Icarus Art at “[email protected]” for a Return Merchandise Authorization (RMA). Then return the unit, insured and freight prepaid, to Icarus Art, Inc., Attn: Repair, 31292 Via Fajita, San Juan Capistrano, CA 92675. Send a copy of your receipt along with a note stating: your name, address, phone number, the nature of the problem, and your request for warranty service. Be sure to package the unit carefully. We are not responsible for damage occurring during shipment. Warranty is applicable only in USA and Canada.