I’ve finally finished the piece ‘Automated Prospects’, and well…
I wonder if an artist, any artist, would (could?!) complete any of their artworks…if they didn’t have a patron, or a deadline, or a show?! Now, I’m not talking about finishing the drawing, it’s all the unrecognised minuatae of a piece: tidying up all the edges, ensuring all the lines are crisp/sharp/unsmudged-by-a-wayward-elbow, cleaning up any fingerprints or smudges…and then the tedium really begins, oh lordy! The sealing, varnishing, buffing, framing, wiring for hanging etc. etc. etc. etc. however, all 100% necessary and therefore I can drag my feet up the hill.
It’s finally finished; the final dying embers of creativity, the last moments of birth…technical, chores, methodical, banal details, the little details, polishing up…tidying up edges, etc…I try to convince myself that no one will notice, so I needn’t spend those agonising hours finishing my work, to a level only reached by the chronically OCD…and so I don’t succumb to the muse, I walk away…for all of 5 mins. And yet I believe my lies…every time.
The dilemma & challenges of painting water; harnessing a medium that acts like water – but maintains the visual stasis, once the product has dried;
[…]and so, *fanfare music* introducing Encaustic Wax Painting…
***the final effect is quite beautiful; the intrinsic blending & conjoining of multiple shades is, well…magical.
With Encaustic Waxes, you can attempt to manipulate the final meshing of the colours – there is also a heavy influence of chaos and pure chance; a reliance on the medium’s properties and its’ reactions to the applied techniques. I love when the medium takes over and the artist (me), becomes a mere facilitator.
It may seem like extra work…but, trust me, you will need a large range of colours; vastly differing from light to dark. This will ensure a more dramatic visual impact.
MAKING THE WAX IS QUITE SIMPLE…
TOOLS & SUPPLIES:
Foil piecases (small)
Old paint Brushes
2.5 cubic inches of beeswax (per colour)
Oil paints in chosen colours (1 Teaspoon per colour)
1 Tablespoon of Wax Medium per colour (here)
STEP 1) In each of the foil casings place:
- 2.5 cubic inches of beeswax (per colour)
- Oil paints in chosen colours (1 Teaspoon per colour)
- 1 Tablespoon of Wax Medium per colour
STEP 2) Put all the prepped foil-casings onto the hotplate (on a low-medium temp) & allow to melt.
STEP 3) Stir them all, using a metal spoon (ensure you’re cleaning your utensil in-between colours; stir until all ingredients are mixed thoroughly (***you will need to continue mixing the waxes throughout the process; ensuring each colour is evenly mixed).
***The canvas you wish to use must be able to handle high temperatures (wood is perfect).
PAINTING WITH ENCAUSTIC WAXES…
- When applying the wax, don’t be shy; liberally apply, because too little & the wax merely soaks into the wood; because wood absorbs liquid up to its’ natural saturation point)
- You should apply the lightest layer first – & darkest last…followed by the addition of a few highlights of the lightest colour (after-the-fact). You should generally align the lightest colour, next to large patches of the darkest colour.
- Once all layers are applied; I had concocted twelve colours in total & if you counted the colour layers in a single spot, you would find, perhaps six-seven colours overlapped each other…the total wax thickness will be about 5-6mm thick. *THE OVERALL EFFECT, AT THIS POINT, WILL LOOK CHUNKY & UNFINISHED – DON’T WORRY, THIS IS ABOUT TO CHANGE…
- You can add more accents, shadows & highlights at any point.
- Continue warming & blending the wax, section-by-section, until complete. Using a heat gun (on the lowest setting), begin to warm the wax in 30cm squared sections. Keep the heat gun at a distance and try to heat the wax evenly.
- Once the wax begins to glisten slightly, bring the heat gun in close to the surface and start manipulating & blending the colours with the force of the hot air & utilising gravity, by changing the angle of the canvas.
(***art pieces depicted are unfinished)