Thank you for your interest in my encaustic painting process.
The following offers a brief description on the techniques that I use in my artwork along with information on the care of encaustic art.
What is Encaustic?
Encaustic painting is an ancient art that dates back to Greek painters in Egypt over 3,000 years ago. Encaustic paint is made with a combination of damar tree resin (crystallized tree sap) and beeswax. The resulting mixture is referred to as encaustic medium. Pigments are added to the encaustic medium, creating colored wax paint.
Encaustic painting is a slow and challenging art form. Rather than working with wet and dry, as with acrylics, watercolor or oils, the encaustic artist must master the method of working with hot and cold to manage the wax. The encaustic medium is kept at a molten temperature of 200 °F in order to apply it like paint. A variety of tools are required to manipulate the paint and keep the medium liquified, such as hot plates, torches, heat guns and specialty irons. The word 'encaustic' means to heat or burn in, the technique used to fuse layers of medium.
Encaustic requires a rigid and absorbent substrate, such as wood, as a base. My artwork is created on cradled boards. When the encaustic wax has cooled to room temperature and hardened, it may then be carved into or additional layers of hot medium and media may be added. My paintings often have several layers, resulting in multidimensional art with an ethereal quality.
How To Care For Encaustic Art
As with any fine art, use care when handling, storing or transporting an encaustic painting. Avoid extreme temperatures and direct sunlight. Encaustic art may developed a haze, called a 'bloom', as the wax cures. Gently buff the surface, if desired, with an optical cloth to restore the shine.
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