Wednesday, August 8, 2007

It's the process and it's not over!

OKAY....this will NOT do. There is waaaay too much texture on this encaustic painting. Working on a 24 x 24 canvas covered panel is like using a tiny brush and making dots......not the big swaths of color I'm used to getting with the gesture of a more fluid medium like acrylic paint.

First off, adding medium to the untreated canvas was a two day off and on job. Canvas soaks that wax up a lot more than just wood panel. There must be a better way to have absorbency but not so much. Then I got out my oil pastels and oil sticks and made gestural drawings and a design as such. I added more medium...fused and all that good stuff. Then I figured I'd try to add more color variety by getting out the oil paints. Oil paint and beeswax are compatible while the oil is still wet and can be fused together. I'm still bumbling around with my palette of color with the waxes. I don't have a full palette of my usual colors to mix. I guess you can say that might be good at times to get out of your rut, but I kinda like my rut until I decide to get out of it.

Getting back to the texture and limitations on the palette. I put the oils out and they are fairly stiff texture so they wouldn't flow onto the painting. I hesitated to add anything to them as then I wondered if I could fuse them safely. Finally I decided, "what the heck, I gotta thin these paints down", and I used a solvent. I made sure it had all evaporated before getting out the heat gun, too. It seems to be working okay but I missed a couple of places last night putting medium on top before fusing so I had to do that this morning as I could feel the paint tackiness in just a couple of places. Then I just kept adding medium, encaustic paint, fusing and scribbling with paint sticks.

Now I'm at the point where I started......too much texture all over this painting. I know some people might like this all over stuff, but I like texture vs. smoothness....not all over for my aesthetic. I, also, will be doing more with all this color all over....hum, maybe lay down a big solid area.That's if I can get a big solid area going. OR, maybe cover a whole lot of it up and scrape down to excavate some of it again. Whatever, I'll have to keep working although I was supposed to be painting on those two 30 x 40 and 40 x 40 canvases over on my painting wall today. AND it's HOT.


  1. I have been following your encaustic adventures with great interest. In this particular example I'm with you - I love the contrast of rough with smooth.

    I envy you your encaustic workshop because ever since I encountered waxed cotton in some clothing I have at the back of my mind wanted to try wax on my stitching. Reading your blog has propelled the thought to the front of my mind, and I must pursue the idea further.

  2. Waxed cotton.....hum, interesting indeed. I checked your blog/website briefly and your work is just wonderful.Mysterious and with motion/rhythm in the pieces I saw. I'll be sure and go back to look more thoroughly when there is time and no grandkids due anytime.

  3. What a wonderful piece! I can't wait to see it finished. It looks great already!!! I can't imagine how outstanding it will be when you are done. The texture is stunning! *HUGS*

  4. Cheryl - Glad you stopped by to check out what I'm up to. I really like what's happening with this piece and the use of oils! I'm anxious to go there too -- oils and encaustics. If you're wanting some smooth surfaces in this piece, I like using the ceramic triangle or loop tool for lightly scraping back after a light fusing with heat gun. I love textures and surface work too! Keep going! :-)

  5. Thanks for checking in Angela...and Cyndy. I've already added more to the upper areas of the painting...more oranges. And have done some scraping back and fusing. I know I will continue to add more as I still want to get some areas smoother in texture and also more value changes there. It's been almost 100 degrees here for a couple of days so I'm taking a break. I'll post another picture after I get more done on it.