Prompt 7 – Hour 13

Create Encaustic Art – 8 – 10:00 p.m.

Things are starting to get a little crazy around here.

Encaustic art is, at the simplest level, painting with wax. Or layering and painting with wax. As with any other art form it is open to interpretation and it is open to experimentation, so the answer to what is encaustic, as far as I’m concerned is art made by painting with wax. Particularly melted wax since, well, painting is hard with solids… I believe in fact that painting with solids is called drawing. 😛

Encaustic paints range in price from about $3.50 a stick bought in sets of 5 or more all the way to $30.00 per set of 2 in tiny blocks of highly pigmented beeswax. Irons, melting pots, special brushes and tools… the whole thing is something that incredibly appeals to me and has been sitting on a back burner for 3 years because, well, frankly, I live with other people, I have a full time job and a full time life and so, well… yeah. By the time I would get it all out and get it all going it would be time to clean it up, so I know me well enough to know I’d never do it. Or I’d do it too rarely to really love it and get good at it. So… what the heck do I do with this? I don’t even have the beeswax chips. And I really really want to do this thing!

So, color… I’m a nut and I love crayons, so $1.75 for a box of crayons… check

I have at least one or two more partially used boxes of crayons just in case I become a little obsessive, which can happen, and in the worst case scenario I will have to buy myself some new crayons, somehow this is not a hardship, so… check

I can draw and I’m not afraid of drippy crayon wax on me, my desk or anything else I might accidentally get it on… check

I have a heat gun, it WILL melt Crayola and many other things and it blows so I might be able to make some fun effects… check


I’ve got this covered. I might not have clear crayons and I bet I can find something that will work and I know I can buff the images when they’re done so that they shine like glass. IF I want them to, that is.

Keep checking back… I’m going to post to the Facebook and Twitter feeds between 8 and 10:00 p.m. this evening as I learn how this thing works, because I’ve never even tried it before today! (well, I HAVE used a heat gun to heat a wax image into a piece of paper, and loved the resist it created… and that was different than this because I did my painting on top of the wax, not under it or with it.)

If you’re not up for painting with wax, here are a couple of other ideas so that we’re at least on the same track, even if we’re going in separate directions…

Try coloring with a white crayon or birthday candle on a piece of paper and then dripping watercolor on it to reveal your artwork.

Have you ever made scratch art? You color an entire piece of paper with crayons in different shapes until the whole page is covered with different colors and then scribble over it with a black crayon or, even better, paint over it with some black acrylic paint. Once it is dry, scratch into it gently with a toothpick or other scratchy tool and watch how your art becomes a rainbow of revealed color in a field of black.

Now we’re cookin’ with gas. I’ve never even done this thing and I’m gonna do it while you witness me, success or failure. 😛

Ruth Hinman

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