Encaustic is a Greek word meaning “to heat or burn in” (enkaustikos).
Encaustic consists of natural bees wax and dammar resin (crystallized tree sap). I use R&F encaustic gesso, wax medium, as well as their pigment wax blocks and pigment sticks. Using a selection of brushes, carving tool and a heated stylus, I “paint” with the hot wax.
There should be no fear of the work melting in normal household conditions. The wax and resin will not melt unless exposed to temperatures over 150 degrees Fahrenheit. Leaving a painting in a car on a hot day would not be advisable or hanging a painting in front of a window with direct desert-like sun. They are also sensitive to freezing cold temperatures.
Some encaustic colors tend to “bloom” or become cloudy over time. If your painting appears indistinct, simply rub the surface with a soft cloth or nylon stocking. Over time the surface retains its gloss as the wax medium continues to cure and harden for up to 1-3 years.
12” x 12” x 1” cradled panel encaustic