First day Facing the Beeswax

Today I prepared my surfaces for my paintings. I glued on the bristol board paper and prepared my beeswax and damar resin concoction I cooked 1 part resin to 8 parts of wax.  That was the recipe percentage that was recommended on most websites on Encaustic techniques.  But, what a mess I made.  I looked on YouTube for a recipe and found a few that said “melt the wax first and then add the damar resin into the wax”.  One site said to first melt the resin in an Electric Frying pan until it is melted and then add the wax.  So, I just went with Jon Peters’ recipe (see link below). Peters did such a great job showing the following steps:   First crush the darmar varnish into powder with a mallet.  Then, melt half the wax in a electric pot and add the resin after the wax is melted.  Then, strain the wax into another container.  Put the now clear wax back into the cooking pot and add the rest of the wax.    Keep the temperature between 180 – 210 degrees.   Well, I did not wait but added the resin before all the wax was melted.  The damar became a glob of hard sticky substance and took forever to melt.  I must have stirred the wax medium for over an hour and the damar resin was still in its crystal gooey state sitting on the bottom of the pan.  I should have listened to Jon Peters who showed the steps which seemed so simple.   The trick is – the darmar resin needs a higher temperature to melt and the wax needs a lower temperature, so that is why one should melt a smaller amount first.  It is amazing how I never follow a recipe but always make these “creative” subtle changes and then regret the changes at the end.

So, tomorrow I will remelt the wax again and follow Jon Peters’ steps rigourously.  Check out his YouTube video at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AuzJkaCyM24#

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Supplies have been Purchased

My Encaustic supplies have been purchased and I have set up a small area in my second bedroom.  I live in a condo and have a bedroom that I made into a multipurpose workroom and TV  room. So, I only have a small property of space for a table and my supplies.  I got the hot plate set up with small metal containers and a larger pan for melting the beeswax.  I ordered my beeswax a while ago and still am waiting for it.  The supplies are coming from http://www.waxworksencaustics.com.

I also have the following picture that I took of waterlilies that I saw on the shoreline of our lake.  I have turned it into a black and white copy and split it into 4 sections.

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So, here is one section of that picture

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From this picture I have made a black and white copy.

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A Black and White copy of the original.

All four sections were put into Photoshop and made into Black and White studies so now i have the pictures to use as starting points.  I will be trying each section out in different encaustic techniques.

So, I hope they work and that I don’t get too frustrated.  I will share my progress as I work through the ideas.