Experimentation in Encaustic

Allende_smWhile teaching an encaustic workshop, I finally had an opportunity to try a technique I’d been thinking about for some time. I’d seen a portrait done in encaustic that felt a lot like a monoprint. The nature of the marks was appealing.

This is a first stab at an approach. I basically put down a smoothish layer of encaustic medium, then rubbed the surface with water-soluble oil paint followed by wiping to pull out color. Details were added with scraping and a bit of oil pastel.

I’d wait longer to let the wax cool next time, so the oil doesn’t get too deep into the surface, but all in all I do like the quality of the marks and that the flesh feels fleshy…something encaustic generally does not lend itself to well. There are other ways that may work better, so more experimentation lies ahead. Definitely want to keep playing with this, probably mixed with more traditional techniques. It’s just another tool in the box.

It makes me think of Isabelle Allende stories.