Encaustic Painting: Making, Materials and Artists.

The type of paint I use depends on the project or aesthetic that I feel is appropriate to the idea of the artwork I’m making at the time. So I am familiar with acrylics, oils and alkyds including their mediums. I’m also familiar with a not so mainstream paint called encaustic. The word encaustic originates from the late 16th century via Latin from Greek enkaustikos, from enkaiein ‘burn in,’ from en- ‘in’ + kaiein ‘to burn’. Its simplest definition is pigment mixed with hot wax.
I’m the sort of artist who likes to use professional quality paints and mediums, so that anyone who buys my artwork can do so with confidence. While on one hand I’m impressed by companies such a Liquitex for their paint technology, I’m also a little repelled by overly sanitised perfection on the other. Encaustic satisfies my need to ‘do it yourself’. It allows for and accommodates human inconsistency (should you decide to make your own encaustic paint, which I do) but maintain the level of quality I demand.
Given that I work in a visual medium, I thought I would illustrate the nature of making encaustic paint by taking pictures of the materials I use in my studio. Some artists that use encaustic paint are Jasper Johns (who is arguably the most famous artist to use encaustic to date), Markus Linnenbrink and Ben Hecht. There will of course be many more, but these are the notable ones that I have come across to date.

Please click here to see my encaustic paintings. 

 The engine room of an encaustic painting practice is the hotplate and mixing pans – Lee Gascoyne 2012
 Raw un-bleeched beeswax – Lee Gascoyne 2012
 Raw Damar Resin – Lee Gascoyne 2012
 Encaustic Medium (Beeswax & Damar Resin) made by the artist – Lee Gascoyne 2012
 Raw dry pigment – Lee Gascoyne 2012

Raw Pigment and Encaustic Medium combined to form Encaustic Paint – Lee Gascoyne 2012

 Encaustic painting support made by the artist (MDF on pine) – Lee Gascoyne 2012

Encaustic Paint applied to the support using a warmed hog hair brush and heat gun – Lee Gascoyne 2012

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