Monday, January 28, 2019

Process of an Encaustic, Mixed Media Painting

I was looking forward to working an a larger board for the latest "The Lightness of Being" It is 47"  x 35 1/2 "

It all started out well. After a couple of layers of milk paint, I added the watercolor and diluted inks. I begin each painting in the series this way. I continued for several days building the under painting; adding and removing until I felt it was ready to be encompassed in a couple of layers of clear encaustic. After I applied and smoothed  the clear and white encaustic, I did a lot of scraping and added stenciled patterns.

After more than a week of working on this, my energy faded and my eyes stopped seeing. Each painting in this series has its own life, but this one seemed to be getting darker and heavier. I stopped, hung in on a wall and will live with it for a while, and see if I feel more comfortable with it and move on to the next one in the series.

The first day.

The third day

5th day



I did received a surprise award this week for another painting in this series.

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

New Year, New Work, New Students and Adventure in Mexico City

New bigger boards.
 The holidays were quiet and enjoyable. I finished a couple more "Lightness of Being" mixed media and encaustic, while waiting for the carpenter to make some bigger cradled boards for me.

Last weekend we went to Mexico City to absorb exciting visual experiences, and culinary taste treats.
Came back to clean the studio and welcome 2 delightful women to an introductory encaustic workshop.

16" x 16"

10" x 10"

Graciela Iturbide photo from the exhibition at Palacio Cultura in Mexico City

Palacio de Cultura where the exhibition was held

Sunday morning music, breakfast and books

encaustic workshop

Ellen. She had never painted anything before


Royal roasted salad at the CedrĂ³n restaurant in Mexico City

Here's how they serve the wine

Casa Lamm in Colonia Roma, Mexico City

Mirrored maze installation outside of the Tamayo museum


Friday, December 21, 2018

More Encaustic Techniques

Happy Holidays to all.

As most of you know, I have been working in encaustic for more than 20 years. Most of that time I was a purist and would only use the hot wax, resin, pigment  mixture to create my paintings. I felt that incorporating other techniques was somehow cheating.

Now I am on a different path. I use encaustic to accomplish the effect I want, and use it  in any archival way to assure my collectors that my work will outlast me and them.

Two of my encaustic paintings in a gallery

textured encaustic

Figurative Encasutic

Here I added cold wax textures over the encaustic

My latest series, Lightness of Being, ink, watercolor, painted rice paper, encaustic

Lightness of Being,  ink, watercolor, painted rice paper, encaustic

Lightness of Being,  ink, watercolor, painted rice paper, encaustic

From the Memories Series, milk paint, ink, oil paint, transfers, charcoal, encaustic

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Process of an Encaustic Painting

This painting started out as watercolor and diluted inks on a couple of layers of milk paint. Then I covered that with clear encaustic. I wanted to keep layering, pushing back the color and pattern and adding more shapes and mark making on continuing layers.

It turned out I wanted more and more white and the only way I could achieve the look I wanted was to paint in white encaustic that had been softened with clear medium.

At the end of each day, I would think, "It is finished", then the next morning when I looked at it I felt "No, it still isn't right" Finally yesterday afternoon I feel it is finished and time to more on to another in this series.

And here is the process:
After the first layer of encaustic medium.

I didn't like the composition with the three shapes in the center and the heavy black shape on the left.

I turn the abstracts around on the easel for a different view. The middle shapes are softened and the heavy black shape is being scraped and layered over.

center shapes are changing; more white over the top black shape.

That shape that is on the left in this view still isn't right

I am happier with it now and call it finished. Lots of white was added.

A horizontal view

Monday, November 19, 2018

I Am Not An Encaustic Artist

Nor am I a cold wax artist, nor a mixed media artist, etc.... I am an artist. I make paintings and use what ever techniques that will convey the message I want to share in my work. I have worked in and taught  encaustic for 20 years and have developed techniques to advance the use of wax in mixed media work.

For several years, I sculpted; wood, clay, plaster, bronze, stone and welded steel. After a divorce, I sold my oxyacetylene torches, tanks of gas, and  all my tools and grinding devises. I did go back to some sculpture and worked in hydrocal for a couple of years. Hydrocal is a white gypsum cement. I enjoyed sculpting and learned to appreciate what it takes to work in 3D.

Then I missed color and paint.

My professional career  started at a publishing company when I was fresh out of art school. I got the job because I knew how to use an airbrush. (My minor was in advertising design)

 While viewing paintings in my home gallery, someone recently said, "It doesn't look like the same artist created all these different paintings" 

After over 60 years of making art, the need to diversify is paramount in making my art. It would be stifling of my creativity to keep making versions of the same painting in the same style.

Below are examples of work in encaustic, oil, acrylic, cold wax, spanning many years and different series.
What do you think about all the different styles and techniques?

Oil with a collaged boarder.

Oil over Acrylic. One of my favorites from a series, circa 1989

Ink drawing from life

encaustic on paper

A Pub in England, live ink sketch. For 12 years I sketched and painted only jazz musicians , while traveling with my musician husband.




Mixed media, My most recent work


cold wax and oil over encaustic

Cold wax and oil 

Saturday, October 27, 2018

Wax workshops in Mexico

I have been teaching encaustic workshops in San Miguel de Allende for 13 years. It is a wonderful experience for me to share all the encaustic techniques that I know and use, and In the past couple of years I have included oil and cold wax classes.

The last 8 paintings of mine that have sold were oil and cold wax. I still love painting and teaching encaustic, but since I don't always use the same technique in my paintings, why not offer both encaustic and cold wax workshops here in magical San Miguel de Allende, Mexico?
Of course I have the online encaustic classes where I share 12 different advanced techniques.

His first experience painting in encaustic

cold wax workshop

encaustic workshop, first experience painting in hot wax and resin

adding ink to the encaustic painting 

encaustic, ink, oil glazes, and transfers

studio with anti-fatigue mats for those hours on our feet

The online classes are just like standing next to me in the gallery. They are informal.