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Encaustic Paintings

Encaustic Paintings
Contributed by- Gangadhar Tatake , PUNE , India
Total views : 33123    3 . 3 . 2009
Encaustic or "Enkostikos", a Greek word which means "to heat" or "to burn," is the name for a painting medium of pigmented hot wax, on a hard surface - either wood, canvas or other, using Metal tools and other special Hog hair brushes.

Nearly three thousand years ago, an enterprising Greek warship   builders  used the beeswax  to protect  caulk  hulls. By   adding   pigments and   resin  for decoration, glossiness  and hardness , they prepared the  coating medium  strong   and  luminosity .

After  many  years  the   artists   from Egypt  use  for paintings portraits of mummies  of their  patrons. In modern times   some   artists   starts  using Encaustic  paints  as  a  painting   medium  instead  of  oil paints or  acrylic paints.

I  feel  the  coming generation  will   use   more  encaustic  paint .

  Encaustic Paintings, ( "Enkostikos" a Greek word) which means "to heat" or "to burn,"   is the name for a  painting  medium of  pigmented  hot wax.  An encaustic art surface is  very  durable because wax, the  basic ingredient, is impervious to moisture and most  environmental changes. The hot wax  liquid / paste is then applied to a surface-wood ,canvas and other materials are often used.

Metal tools and other special Hog hair brushes can be used to paint before it cools, or heated metal tools also can be used before wax cooled on the surface.

Tools: Basic -- In Encaustic Painting, beeswax, resin and pigments are used to produce  a bright, and translucent surface. You can collage using other material with wax and applying heat to fuse  each layer to fix

* Rigid support like hard board or wooden drawing board..

* Hot Palette - Hot plate,  a pancake griddle etc

* Encaustic Paint - You can mix your own or purchase from market.

* Metal Tins - For each wax paints.

  • Hog hair brushes- Brushes are good. from hardware stores 

*  Electric tools have made using encaustics a lot easier.

  • Tools such as Heat guns, Hot plate, Stylus etc.

* Scraping tools and many more


Basic Steps:

 Beeswax : Basic element-100% natural ( yellow ) or white filtered ( clear ).

 Damar  Resin :  is a natural tree resin from the pine Asian tree. Use crystal form. ( Not to use  ready made liquid resin)

                                Beeswax  +  Damar  Resin = Stoke Encaustic  Medium

                                      8%     +      2%     = it becomes the  encaustic medium

                                   Wax      +    Encaustic medium   +  Pigment  = Encaustic  paint


Applying Wax :

Hog hair brushes are preferred by many artists, but  cheap  brushes from hardware stores  will work fine. Do not use plastic brushes. You can add various textures, use stencils and add  collage materials. After finishing the painting  you need not use glass etc.

Encaustic Paintings
Encaustic Paintings Encaustic Paintings


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