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Abstract Encaustic Maps with Layers of Color

There are so many artistic possibilities that are unique to encaustic painting. Achieving these kinds of transparent layers would be difficult, if not impossible, with any other painting medium.  It’s the main reason I love encaustic painting so much.  These encaustic maps have grids that are layered on top of one another.  They appear to be floating almost, and are noticeably at different levels within the painting.  Love it!

By the way, if you’re interested in purchasing this set, it’s listed here.

 

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Abstract Encaustic Maps

If you read my last post (also about abstract maps) you’ll know that I love the idea of the history behind the streets and grids that maps display.  How each city developed into what it is today fascinates me- the changing neighborhoods, the forgotten infrastructure, and all the hidden stories that these lines represent were constantly in my thoughts as I created these pieces.

Have any of you ever seen those shows that take you underneath the streets of a city?  They show you catacombs and sewers, modern infrastructure and historic, hidden places.  I love watching those shows, and I always wish that I was there with them.  The idea of touring beneath the streets of some of the most historic and famous cities in the world, learning the history and imagining the lives of the people who once stood where I would be standing, is so fascinating to me.

 

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Although these small 6×6 encaustic maps are not representative of any specific city, I imagine those hidden streets and sewers each time I see these pieces.  I created them organically, drawing the lines and shaping the grids quickly without references.  They really just represent possibility- how everything is created a piece at a time, and is constantly evolving.  Once thriving places will decay and be forgotten over time.  Maybe in the next life I’ll be able to understand the truth of what happened in so many of these places.  That would truly be awesome.

 

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Interested in purchasing this set?  Click here!

Encaustic Art with Contrasting Texture

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I have an encaustic piece for you today, with a new video of course!  There is so much awesome contrasting texture in this piece, I love it.  And looking at these pictures, I can see I’ve been working with blue and white a lot lately…  Maybe some green or red for my next project, eh?  Sounds about right.  🙂

I cut a lot of things out of this video, for the sake of time, but mostly because there were a lot of things I tried initially that didn’t work.  For example, at one point I tried to outline some of the shapes I created with lots of lines drawn with ink into the wax.  I’m not sure if it was a lack of talent on my part, or the wrong tools, or just bad technique, but those lines turned out pretty awful.  No biggie, though- I gently scraped them off the surface of the wax, and used the excess to make a few more of the round wax balls I adhered to the surface.

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  • I began with a square block of plywood, and painted it with white gesso.
  • I added a couple layers of clear wax, fusing with my heat gun between each layer.
  • Starting with the darker of my R&F pigment sticks, I added a bit to the cool wax surface and smeared it around, making sure I was wearing gloves.
  • I fused the oil into the wax, then carefully added another layer over it and fuse it again.  If you get some excess color on your brush, clean the hot brush with a paper towel.
  • The lighter of my oil sticks came next.  I smeared some over the surface, then went to town with my heat gun.  All the layers mixed, and created a smooth wax surface.
  • Using a sharp tool, I drew some lines into the wax, all the way to the wood surface.  In the process, I saved the extra bits of wax to use later.
  • Certain sections got a layer of blue india ink.  Of course, I decided afterwards they were a bit too blue, so I scraped a lot of the surface, took the excess wax and roll it into little balls and added them to the surface of those sections.  Can’t forget to fuse!
  • I added several layers of clear and white wax to those textured sections, fusing in between each layer.
  • The last step was to fix all the lines (multiple fuses made the lines meld together in some places) and add india ink into the grooves.

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Done!!  Not exactly what I had in mind when I started this piece, but it’s always a learning experience.

I hope I’ve inspired you today!!  Thanks for stopping by!