Oil Pigment stick and encaustic on wood panel.
I don’t remember where I saw these oil paint sticks…oh, yep I do, one showed up in my Pigment and Palette box awhile back. Just white, and I picked it up to use it on the urchin painting….and it worked great! Then I did a little research and they looked like a lot of fun. One thing led to another and before you know it I have a starter set of colors.
Well, they are fun, but boy are they messy! My first attempt was more mess than anything. After a little more research I became a little more disciplined and set up my space so that I could keep the mess to a minimum. I decided to try them with the encaustic this time. I really like how they work. I added the first layer with my fingers (protecting my skin with gloves) and then fused the layers and used a brush to apply the pigment after that (a tiny brush, as I was working small). This set came from R&F–they are very nice. R&F Pigment Sticks Website
I think I will try a larger painting next. The great thing about this medium is, no solvents needed, no concerns of fat over lean (like oil paint) and quicker drying time. Mixes well with oil paint as well.
Water Soluble Crayon and Colored Pencil
Lately sketching is all I can manage. I feel frustrated with the lack of time, and I need to let that go. I have decided to do at least one 5 minute sketch everyday. You can’t really accomplish a whole lot in 5 minutes, but it is amazing what you can do! And, it’s kind of like 10 minutes of yoga, its better than nothing and still adds value. The other thing about sketching that is good for me is that it just gets my hand and my head moving together. I am also adding some journal entries to the sketch and that is good too. Helps me focus on the moment and I think it will be nice to reflect back on.
My goal this weekend will be to start a piece that I intend to finish…more than just a sketch. But the sketch will get me there!
5 to 7 minute sketch
photo encaustic: image printed on light pink tissue
While looking for something to work on for encaustic that would be easy to deal with in terms of finishing and ready to hang I came across cradled birch panel. This seems like it might be perfect for a range of work. Today I worked on some photo encaustic and that turned out pretty well. I think that these will also work for casein and even colored pencil with the right ground. The dandelions seem to be popular–so I am going to work on a bunch of these. I have had several friends respond well to these, so I will be giving some away. This will help me perfect techniques and motivate me to feel good about doing some “repeats”. The nice thing about the encaustic is that each one turns out a little different, so they are all unique.
photo encaustic on stone
Last weekend we took the boat to Isle Au Haut. It was a beautiful day for a hike and such a great spot to visit. I collected stones (some small, some large enough for encaustic) and a few shells. I found one shell that was absolutely fabulous! A rare find up on the cliffs overlooking the water. I will post that soon.
Looking forward to some time off the day job to pursue art projects.
Stone is the substrate winner for encaustic! It really loves the wax. I think that the over the winter drawing has really helped me loosen up. I feel so much more at ease laying in work with paint. I am going to try and stick with the shell idea for as long as I can. Now that the shed is up and running I can pick and choose what subject matter is good for encaustic when the inspiration hits me. This shell just fit right onto this stone. I would like to do some with several shells, deeper shadows and really vibrant colors. The encaustic on stone really enhances the colored pencil against the casein–I need to learn to plan for this and take advantage of it.
This is approximately 3″ x 5″, casein underpainting with colored pencil, graphite and encaustic.
Dandelion in the mist
Sigh. It feels so good to get back to the wax again! I took this photo last week and knew right away it was destined for encaustic. And, then I found the perfect substrate on the beach–a nice wood block. So, I let that dry out, and gave it a casein white ground, painted some white encaustic in the center before doing a nice encaustic medium ground. The photo was printed on tissue paper and cut carefully with an x-acto knife. I burnished that down onto the warm ground and added a couple of coats of encaustic medium. Final touch was just a little white encaustic around the dandelion and then fused with some extra attention in the center. I was really pleased with the substrate and the tissue paper.
On to try some stone. Doing a casein underpainting and then I will add the details with colored pencil—the plan is to do encaustic medium over the finished work to seal it up. Today is our hottest day so far, and we are all really enjoying the warmth and sunshine!