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.
It 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.
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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