Resin flower art becomes a full-time gig for Waikerie’s Jax Isaacson

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As every parent knows, it’s almost impossible to do much around the house when your kids are little.

For graphic designer Jax Isaacson, starting long-term art projects wasn’t an option with two active preschoolers, so she turned to a medium she could craft in stages and started experimenting with it. resin.

“At first I wanted to do printing, but it’s a long and very complicated process and I was never able to do anything in a short time, while they were asleep,” said Isaacson.

“I started playing with resin because it’s a quick process.

The flowers inside the resin objects are dried and stored in silica to retain their vibrant colors.(ABC Riverland: Catherine Heuzenroeder)

Popular resin for DIY

The resin is a two-part epoxy that hardens into a durable clear plastic and has become popular with professional artists and DIY enthusiasts.

Millions of posts on social media platforms, including Instagram and Tik Tok, show that the resin is used in everything from ornaments to jewelry and acrylic paint pouring.

After much trial and error, Isaacson created her own collection with plants from her hometown of Waikerie in South Australia’s Riverland, where she and her husband Richard grow pistachios.

Woman holding a round resin art ornament in a home studio with a packing box on a bench in front of her.
Although resin is a durable product, Jax Isaacson takes great care in packaging it to fulfill online orders.(ABC Riverland: Catherine Heuzenroeder)

Its hand-molded ornaments, salad servers, cheese knives and wall art feature native plants such as gum blossom, acacia, erempohila, billy buds (craspedia), everlasting daisies. and the larger proteas, banksia and Sturt’s desert pea.

“I pick everything locally, which I love because I want to showcase the local native flowers and environment,” Isaacson said.

Trial and error to develop technique

It has developed its own processes for making molds, drying flowers, sanding and polishing.

“It probably took me a good 18 months to create a product that I was really comfortable selling.

“I had a bunch of different skills that came together to make these items, so I’m sure I was inspired by other great artists, but in the end I want to do something original.”

A round resin ornament with a Sturt Desert polka dot inside, held in a woman's hand with a box in the background
This striking desert polka dot ornament by Sturt is one of Jax Isaacson’s designs.(ABC Riverland: Catherine Heuzenroeder)

Isaacson was born in Waikerie but left at 17. She lived in Canada for a while before exploring the world as a backpacker.

She returned to Australia to study design in Adelaide before settling in the Riverland area with her family.

Social media marketing goes viral

While working in a regional area, Isaacson discovered that social media was the best marketing tool for growing his small business.

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At the end of 2018, it shared for the first time a publication of its products on a Facebook page intended for artists and artisans affected by the drought.

She returned an hour later after baking a cake with her kids and found the post was all the rage and her website was out of stock.

“I was well known in South Australia, but it made my name known in Victoria and New South Wales,” she said.

“Instagram got me a lot of requests from wholesale and stores interested in showcasing my work.”

Earlier this year, she posted a video unmolding an apple ornament on Tik Tok.

“It went viral and it gave me a lot more commissions and international exposure.”

Although she makes a living doing what she loves, there are challenges to overcome.

“I find being an artist in a rural area can be a bit of a lonely existence and now that I’m at a point where I’m full time and the business is making money I find it overwhelming. do it myself, “she said.

Bringing in friends and family has helped Ms Isaacson run her business, which she says could grow into bespoke pieces using wedding and funeral flowers.

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