Monday, October 31, 2011

Afternoon Glow

Encaustic on board, 6" x 6"
$125 plus $6 shipping in U.S.
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Happy Halloween!

Maybe it's the season--all those wax candles burning inside pumpkins-- that made me want to try this, my first encaustic painting. This ancient and durable painting method (there are beautifully preserved encaustic murals in the ruins of Pompeii) mixes refined beeswax with pigment.

In traditional encaustic technique, colors are kept warm on a hotplate, so that the wax is liquid when applied to the painting. In the method I used, called cold wax, the paint is applied without heat. I mixed the oils with Gamblin's Cold Wax Medium. It imparts a stiffness to the paint that is great for building up thick, painterly surfaces. A great discovery for me was the way finer lines like the light branches in this painting could be dragged across darker areas without sinking into the wet paint and losing crispness. The wax also imparts a rich, translucent vibrancy to the paint layers.

I'm having lots of fun exploring this new (to me) medium. And now you know where to send all your post-Halloween candle stubs!


Marilyn Flanegan said...

Your color IS glowing and wonderful...I miss Ohio.
: )
nice detail!

Susan Roux said...

Lovely autumn scene, Don. Wax, huh? Now I'll be very anxious to see what you come up with. Wax on wax off...

Sonya Johnson said...

Don, I'm really enjoying all these fall color pieces you've been posting recently, probably because that's been my landscape subject of choice for the past 5 weeks or so.

I have a friend who works in encaustics and ever since I first saw her work, I've been interested in it. So many different applications with it! It's given your painting a wonderful deep glow. It will be fun to see what you do with this medium :).

Don Gray said...

Hi Marilyn--nice to hear from you. Thanks!

Don Gray said...

Thanks, Susan. Yeah, I'll probably end up removing a lot of waxy buildup. :^)

Don Gray said...

Hello Sonya and thanks for those supportive words. You've been doing some gorgeous paintings of the fall landscape. The Colorado evergreens are such a perfect foil for those spectacular yellows.