Tag: encaustic art

Encaustic Mixed Media: Wine Corks, Playing Cards, Scrabble Tiles, and Letters

Wine Cork Mixed Media, Finished Piece

Recently, I was asked by a family friend do do a commissioned work of art for her husband’s sixtieth birthday. I was flattered, and excited for the prospect of a new project. It all began with a very large bag of corks from wine Buddy and Margaret (lovingly called Uncle Buddy and Aunt Margaret, as they have been a part of my family since my parents were in high school) had enjoyed over the last 30 years. She mentioned she liked my mixed media pieces, and hoped I could incorporate the corks into the work of art. It was easy having a client like Aunt Margaret, because she appreciates art, is open minded, and has amazing ideas that helped me work towards the final piece.

When the first package of corks arrived, ideas immediately began buzzing. We discussed prices and sizes, and settled on a large, 36″x48″ panel as the base. I decided I would use the corks, and I wanted every inch of the panel covered with them. They would create the base texture for the overall piece. Since I was working so heavily with corks, I opted for a wine theme, to bridge the material with the imagery.

While I was planning out a rough design, Aunt Margaret began discussing the project with family members. As they talked about the future creation, stories of Uncle Buddy began to be swapped, sand volcanoes on the beach, the endless search for sharks teeth, his love for all things boards games and card tricks. As the family reminisced Aunt Margaret decided she wanted a type of “Buddy search,” a bigger image filled with all things Buddy hidden in the layers and objects. Soon after, I received another package filled with sharks teeth, newspaper clippings of Uncle Buddy’s high school football career, and beautiful letters written between Aunt Margaret and Uncle Buddy, while he was in the military.

Wine Corks Stage 1 and 2

As we threw ideas back and forth, it began to take form in my mind, and become a reality on the wood panel. I started by cutting corks in half, and gluing them to the panel to create a pattern in the background. I used whole corks to form the wine bottles, to create a sense of depth between the bottles and background. I cut wine corks in strips to go under the wine bottles, and define a tabletop space. At the very bottom I cut wine corks into circular sections to create a wave like pattern, reminiscent of the beach, and Hilton Head Island where they have spent much of their time.

To reference Uncle Buddy’s interest in cards and scrabble, I incorporate both into the piece. I decided to make it appear as though scrabble tiles where pouring out of the sideways wine bottle, spilling over a card game. I also used the tiles in the background, and spelled out each name in their family: Buddy, Margaret, Andrew, and Aaron. I’m still not sure this is a part they have discovered yet, but I enjoyed every minute of creating this personal scavenger hunt.

Wine Corks Stage 3

Once the base layer was complete, I added thin, art paper over top. I knew from the beginning I would cover the entire piece with encaustic wax. When the encaustic is melted onto certain types of paper, it create a semi-transparent look. I often play with encaustic and collage, and I was excited to have the additional elements of the corks, tiles, and cards added. I used different types of paper to distinguish the different areas, tacked it down with hot glue, then began painting the many layers of melted encaustic wax.

Wine Corks Stage 4

As I layered the wax, I also began incorporating copies of the letters and newspaper clippings. Although Aunt Margaret encouraged me to use the originals, I couldn’t bear to essentially ruin these family memories. I made high quality color copies, to maintain the ink color, and match them as close to the originals as possible. I scattered the envelopes and letters along the top, bottom, and behind the wine bottles. I also decided to layer the wine bottles with ripped up sections of the letters to tone down the dark green and create an interesting pattern with the mix of handwriting.

Once I finally achieved a fairly smooth, wax surface, and was satisfied with the placement of the letters, I began painting. I added wine glasses, olives, and shadows to help define the sections further. A number of times I added something, only to remove it the next day. The piece transitioned from light, to a dark background, from one to two to three wine glasses, it was continuously changing and I couldn’t seem to find my stopping point.

After seeking out second opinions from my wonderful husband and mom, I decided to add dark shadows to certain areas to create more contrast. I finally began to strike a balance in the piece, I was finally seeing the end.

Bottom Details

I emphasized the separation between the table and the background with a harder, dark line. The shadows under the wine bottles were emphasized, as well as around the letters.

Detail, Letter and Scratching

I also began scratching into the surface of the wax to create crosshatched shadows.

Detail, Glass with Olives

I darkened the shadows around the wine glasses to help the white highlights pop. As I painted in the glasses and olives, I opted for a semi-transparent look. I left the olives with see through centers, and a more sketchy feel. I love the play between the background and foreground.

Wine bottle details

The wine bottles finally began to pop, the letters stood out against the background, and your eye was drawn around the piece. It finally felt complete.

Wine Cork Mixed Media, Finished Piece

I was very pleased with the end result and excited it was going to a family I already love so much, to be hung in their living room. I know they will look at it and appreciate it every day.

Wine Corks Ready to Ship

The most stressful part came when it was time to package and ship this very large, heavy, and delicate piece from Atlanta, GA to Denver, CO. Layer after layer of foam and tape was applied before my signature twine, card, and encaustic info was added on top. It shipped out in a very pieced together looking box, but it was enough to keep it safe to its final destination

Uncle Buddy and the Final Piece

Happy sixtieth Uncle Buddy!

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Carving Encaustic: Negative Space Birch Trees

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For the past six months I have been experimenting with encaustic medium. After spending the last three years using encaustic as a medium to collage and layer with, I have decided it is time to take it a step further. My 3D and 2D interests were brought together when I began carving into the top layer of wax to create objects, and expose the collaged layers below.

The Chair_PanettaIt all started with my Hitchcock chair encaustic, read more about it here. I originally planned to “paint” the chair form with yellow encaustic, but when I realized I didn’t have enough control over the melting of the material to get the small details, I opted to carve it instead. I fell in love with the process and the look.

The antlers and cow skull followed the chair, and now, my latest and largest piece, is my birch tree encaustic.

I layered paper on the wood panel, planning out where each birch tree would be placed. I intentionally put neutral colored paper in the background, and blocked out the birch tree forms with a silver pattern paper. To break up the colors, I opted for the largest birch tree form to have a different pattern and color combination, with golds, bronzes, browns, and tans.

Once the paper layers were complete, I painted and fused multiple layers of encaustic medium until I had a smooth surface. Next, I painted and fused neutral white encaustic in the center of the piece. Once the layers were set, I took a knife and began the carving process.

I love the play between the positive and negative space. I look forward to continuing to explore this new process in the future with new pieces large and small. Be on the lookout for better pictures once I have it hanging in my house!

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Thanks for taking the time to check out my blog and my new artwork! Help me spread the word about art, encaustic, and crafting by sharing with others. Don’t forget to subscribe below for updates straight to your e-mail. Thanks for stopping by!

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2015 Whimsical Wares Spring Show

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After a very successful show with Whimsical Wares this past November, I decided to team up with them again and participate in their spring show. Debbie And Helaine have worked endless hours to find artists who offer interesting arts, crafts, jewelry, and other unique gifts. This show is just in time for Mother’s Day shopping and the upcoming wedding season. It opens today, located in Marietta at 255 Village Parkway, Building 500, Suite 580.

Show times:

-Thursday, 4/23, 10:00 am-8:00 pm

-Friday, 4/24, 10:00 am-7:00 pm

-Saturday, 4/25, 10:00 am-5:00pm

-Sunday, 4/26, 11:00am-3:00pm

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For this show I decided to include a mix of my encaustic mixed media, letter prints, and pottery. I love working with a variety of media, and I am excited to present the wide range I work in.

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This year, I started experimenting with slip casting after teaching a slip cast lesson to my high school, 3D Design II students. I fell in love with the process, and began making my own slip cast molds of antique milk jugs and mason jars. You can shop my new slip cast creations at the Whimsical Wares show, at Crafted Westside, located off Marietta Street in Atlanta, or at the Crafted pop up shop in Avalon, Alpharetta.

IMG_2437In addition to my slip cast pieces, I also have my usual flower decorated bowls and mugs. I also have a few saggar fired bowls, which creates interesting smoke like patterns on the pieces.

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I hope you find time to check out the Whimsical Wares spring show. If you miss it this weekend, you can also check out my artwork at the 17th annual Wesleyan Artist Market, opening next weekend, 4/30/15 through 5/2/15.

Thanks for taking the time to check out my blog and read about my latest art and craft endeavors. Help me spread the word about my blog and artwork by subscribing or sharing on your social networking site of choice. Thanks for stopping by!

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Encaustic Art: Exploring Mixed Media and Carving Wax

Panetta_1

For the past three years I have dabbled in the world of encaustic art. I began incorporating it into sections of my mixed media paintings, and slowly it became my primary medium. I have learned so much in the last three years, how to achieve smooth surfaces, how to manipulate the layers, and most recently, how to incorporate carving into my designs.

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As I began working with encaustic, I primarily focused on black and white paintings of singular objects on top of collaged layers and encaustic medium. A water tower from my years living in Athens, ginkgo leaves from the tree at my Atlanta home, and images of chickens, among many other things, began finding their way into my works of art. I realized each of these objects represented a different piece of my past and present. They were self-portraits through objects, small snippets of the memories that make me up.

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As I began exploring the concept of self-portraits and representing memories further, I realized specific objects would immediately come to mind as I reminisced on certain events and moments in my past. Likewise, when I saw certain objects, memories would begin flooding back. These fleeting images in my mind became the basis for my newest works of art, objects carved out of colored wax, revealing the collaged layers in the background.

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The lines and shapes of the objects are mimicked in the background, making them feel like one. The carving out of the objects, creating a negative space, represents the fleeting images that come to mind as memories are processed. I want the objects to almost feel temporary as the viewer looks at them.

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Perhaps my favorite part of my recent artistic journey, is hearing how my images have also brought memories back to the viewers who see them. As they take in the lines, shapes, and colors, they tell me how their grandfather used to have a camera like that, or how they used to live on a farm. Their stories intertwine with my own, and continue to inspire these encaustic works of art.

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Art and Craft Fair: St. Pius X Holiday Marketplace

logo-marketplaceIt has been one busy month! I have yet another art and craft festival to share about. This is the third I have been involved in this month, and not quite the last one. I have enjoyed every minute of the arts and crafts festivals I have participated in. It has given me a taste of what it is like to be a working artist. And, I must say, I am liking it.

This Saturday, 11/22/14, is the St. Pius X Holiday Marketplace. This is another huge festival, the perfect place to get a head start on your holiday shopping. This is the 21st annual Holiday Marketplace, and with over 160 vendors, a raffle, and bake sale, this is an Atlanta event you have to check out. It costs just $3.00 to get in the door to check out all the amazing booths. The $3.00 also provides a raffle ticket for an opportunity to win a handmade item from one of the 160 items donated to the raffle, and all proceeds go towards the St. Pius X scholarship fund.

Dove

My dove silhouette encaustic is one of the many items you could win in the raffle.

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I can’t wait to start setting up this Friday, and I have a wide variety of items and prices to offer. My display has held up well through all of the events this month, and I am looking forward to putting it to good use once again.

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growth of a treeI will have a variety of sizes available of my mixed media encaustic works of art. They range in size from 24″x 24″ to 6″x 6″. Prices range from $650.00-$25.00.

birch tree

I have just completed another set of my three mixed media birch tree encaustics. They look beautiful hanging next to each other, with the background moving from dark to light, or sold separately. They each measure 12″x 12″ and are available for $100.00 each.

ABC's

I will also have my encaustic letters as well as matted letter prints. These are easy to grab and give as personalized gifts to a friend or family member. The encaustic letters measure 6″x 6″ and are $25.00 each. The prints are 6″x 6″ and are matted in white 8″x 10″ or 8″ x 8″ mats, and are only $10.00 each.

Come check out the 21st St. Pius X Holiday Marketplace! Get additional information and directions here.

Thanks for taking the time to check out my blog and ready about my adventures in the arts and crafts festival circuit. Help me spread the word by sharing with others. Thanks for stopping by!

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