Encaustics at Home – A How To

Encaustics at Home – A How To

Maybe you’re like me- maybe you tried encaustic painting in school and got hooked- maybe you then graduated, moved into an older apartment sans ventilation, got a job at a nonprofit (thus eliminating the possibility of paying for an outside studio) and found yourself without a place to further explore said medium?

Well never fear! I’ve put together a handy how-to:

A note: timing is everything here. Make sure that you wait to try encaustics the weekend before your pieces are due. Bonus points if the paintings are for a group you’ve only just joined (and are eager to impress) and double bonus points if it’s unseasonably warm- you want sweatyness to be at maximum.

Step one: wake up and greet the day! Make coffee, but be sure you don’t change out of what are obviously pajamas. Also don’t wash your face or touch your hair.

Step two: Set up the griddle your grandma gave you for Christmas that has been languishing in the cabinet. Be sure to cover with foil to protect the surface. Your first instinct will be to turn it up to 300 degrees. This is unnecessary and will cause a frightening amount of smoke before you turn it down to an acceptable level (100 some degrees)

Step three: while waiting for the griddle to warm up and the wax to melt, open your kitchen door and window.This will allow any toxic fumes to vent, and will also give your neighbors a good view of your sweaty, disheveled, pajama’d self.

Step four: Speaking of neighbors, be sure to call out a friendly ‘hello’ to any neighbors that walk by without offering any explanation as to what you are doing. Use an old, loud hair dryer in place of a heat gun to further confuse them.

Step five: Be sure to leave the door and window open after you’re done, to fully air out your tiny kitchen.

Step six: Post sneak peeks of the paintings to hold blog readers until you can take well lit/edited photos at work.


(full photos coming soon!)


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