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Great news! I’ve decided to reissue my book, Embracing Encaustic: Learning to Paint with Beeswax, as an electronic book (eBook) for the third edition. This will allow me to create a more comprehensive and less expensive book that will be available for immediate download by artists all over the world. It will be available through Amazon.com and readable on Kindle readers, iPads and other devices with Kindle software. Publishing as an eBook will also allow me to greatly expand our Gallery section to include many more inspiring works by artists from several countries.
Choosing the artists for the new edition of Embracing Encaustic was challenging job, but in the end I selected 70+ pieces from over 150 artists who submitted work. Because of the file size limitations for downloading an eBook many fine works could not be included in this edition.
Some tough decisions had to be made, for example, where images simply wouldn’t reproduce well because of the palette or size of the work or where two artists work were too similar to include both. If your name is not included on the list of artists below, please don’t be discouraged as it was impossible to include all the deserving artists.
Congratulations to these fine artists whose work will be published in the new edition of Embracing Encaustic! Read the rest of this entry »
I’m proud to have an article in the current issue of Encaustic Arts Magazine called “Creating and Embracing New Opportunities” which tells the story of how my book, Embracing Encaustic, led to many more new opportunities including my online encaustic classes at WomackWorkshops.com.
Here’s an excerpt: “As the huge truck pulled up in front of my house I got a chill up my spine. I knew the books would arrive sometime that week but no one seemed to want to give me a firm delivery date. I watched as the driver struggled to maneuver the bulky pallet through my garden gate and I worried that it wouldn’t fit. As he drove away, leaving me with box after box of my new encaustic book I thought, not for the first time, “What have I done?”
It all started about 5 years ago when one of my students mentioned that she couldn’t find an encaustic book with step-by-step instructions for beginners. That got me thinking that it wouldn’t be too hard to put one together, especially with the new print-on-demand services that had recently become available for self-publishing books online. Using this service they would be printed as they were purchased, so I would never need to print a large number of books. By that evening I had decided which service to use, downloaded the software and purchased the Internet domain name Embracing Encaustic.”
Read the whole article online. It’s a very inspiring magazine, so please share it with your friends!
I’ve finally had time to put together some preview videos for our online encaustic classes at WomackWorkshops.com. Take a peek:
That’s right, if you can’t get to my classes in Oregon I’ll come to you online! Get 6 months of access, work at your own pace, get personalized instruction, and interact with a community of like-minded artists. View our class listings and more free videos at WomackWorkshops.com.
Today I received the shipment I’ve been waiting for, just over 2,000 more copies of my book, Embracing Encaustic: Learning to Paint with Beeswax. I was anxious to get them because I was down to a mere 60 books from the previous two printings, but NOT anxious to get them all down the stairs to my basement for storage. Ugh. Sometimes I wish I had printed a brochure like a normal person.
Thanks to all of you who have supported my by buying this book, and all who have written me such nice notes thanking me for writing it. Please keep spreading the word at least 2,000 more times!
Weather Alert! I’m still having my open studio tonight from 5 – 8 pm but the weather might not cooperate so please be careful out there. I’ll have my books, art and some necklaces priced from $10 – $50, perfect for gifts.
My studio is located at 5417 Se Stark St. Portland, Oregon. It’s near the corner of SE 55th and Stark, but the studio entrance is on 55th. View a map here.
If you want to buy art, tools or gift certificates for workshops and can’t get here tonight, just email or call me to make an appointment for another time. (503) 348-9139.
Here are some of the tools I have available right now:
Another great option for filling these bags or as stocking stuffers would be tickets to my Working in Wax lecture in February. More details are below.
Tickets to Working in Wax, $10
Join me at 23 Sandy Gallery on February 7, 2009 for Working in Wax. This lecture will be a rich visual introduction to the history, tools and techniques of encaustic painting, along with an overview of contemporary artists working in this ancient medium. I’ll share images of several of my paintings as they were being created, showing some of the steps involved in building up the layers of wax and other media.
There will also be a screening of Sister Bee, a lyrical and beautiful documentary about six women beekeepers who encounter startling beauty and spiritual truth in their work with honeybees (Running time 30 minutes). Tickets are $10 and are available in my studio or by mail. Limited to 25 people.
I’ll admit it, I was a little hesitant about applying for the Kay WalkingStick Critical Feedback Workshop. I hoped if I could get in I would get valuable information from her that I would not likely have a chance at again. I was right. Kay accepted only 10 people from the pool of applicants and I was honored to be one of them.
On Monday we gathered in the assigned room, all feeling a little nervous with our art and souls laid out for her to review. She had asked each of us to bring a CD of our work, but also at least one actual piece, explaining that you just can’t have a substitute for seeing, smelling and feeling the work.
Each of us went in turn talking a bit about our work and answering Kay’s questions about our intent, our process or our symbolism. I won’t discuss any specifics of what was said in the class because it was all so personal, but I can share some of the questions Kay asked of us so you can ask them of yourselves:
1. Do you spend at least a couple of hours in the studio every day? (about half of the people in the room were able to say yes, but Kay said that was better than she thought it would be.)
2. What is your goal for your art career? (Have your work shown in a museum, pay your bills and feed your family or somewhere in between — it’s all valid)
3. What are you looking for when you go to look at art? Does your work fulfill that need?
4. Who is your favorite artist and what do you expect their art to do for you?
5. What subject do you want to investigate?
6. How to do conceptualize your work? How do you begin (through color, image, idea)?
7. How are your pieces related to one another, if at all?
8. What symbolism are you trying to convey?
9. Who is your audience? What do you want your audience to see?
Later in the day Kay met with each of us individually and I was thrilled (and relieved!) to hear that she heartily encouraged my plans for a new series (based on the work above) and helped me focus the path I’ve laid out for the next several months. When asked if I should try to work some of my ideas out on paper versus complete paintings she said, “Don’t just work the ideas out any way you can, work them out EVERY way you can.” Excellent advice. I feel like I now have new tools for evaluating my own art and how to become more focused in my work.
I’m thrilled to announce that Embracing Encaustic has arrived! A closely packed palette was delivered right to my door, then all 30 boxes were lugged into the basement in many painful trips…
For those of you in Portland, please come celebrate with me in my studio with a book release party this Friday. I’ll have champagne and chocolate on hand, along with a few of the other artists who have work in the book.
Friday, May 30
6:00 – 8:30 pm
The Hive, 5417 SE Stark St.
Here’s a map to my studio, which you enter from SE 55th. Feel free to pass this invitation on to friends. Please RSVP so I know how many people to expect, though if you decide to come at the last minute I’ll always be happy to see you.
Can’t make this party? There will be more on both coasts. See the list of additional book release parties for Embracing Encaustic. The next party will be in Beverly, MA at the National Encaustic Conference.
* * Embracing Encaustic will be available to purchase online by June 15 at www.embracingencaustic.com * *
While I’m talking up this new book I should mention two things:
1. My fabulously talented husband, Bill, is a writer and the other author on Embracing Encaustic. Trust me, you will be very grateful for this fact. (BTW, he also took all of the photographs that have my hands in them! Well, except for that one shot when he wasn’t home and, well, it wasn’t pretty.) But the point is that he is a wonderful writer.
2. Life has not slowed down while we tried to get this book out. All of the show deadlines, grocery shopping, doctor’s appointments, family drama and tax bills (see drama) just kept on coming no matter what the designers or printers needed by deadline.
I mention this because these two facts recently came together to make possible this wonderful post on my husband’s blog, Words for Writers.
Enjoy The Ripple Effect, which describes the excitement we had outside our house recently. Oh yeah, and all the police cars.
I received the first press proofs of my revised book yesterday and they looked better than I ever imagined! The resolution is so good that you can see brush strokes in many of the works and the color is brilliant. I was especially interested in seeing the work of my 25 guest artists, as those are all new to this edition of the book.
Here’s a list of the guest artists who will be included in the Embracing Encaustic: Learning to Paint with Beeswax:
Janet Bartlett Goodman
Diana Gonzalez Gandolfi
Bridgette Guerzon Mills
In addition to sharing their work in the book, each artist also shares some insight into how the work was created, often sharing surprising tips and tricks along the way. I think this is my favorite aspect of the new edition. These artists have been so generous in sharing their knowledge! To view more work by each of these artists visit www.embracingencaustic.com for links to their web sites.
I’m expecting the books to arrive by the end of May. I’ll announce it on this blog when they are available for purchase!
The Second National Encaustic Painting Conference will take place at Montserrat College of Art, June 6-8, 2008. Montserrat is in Beverly, Massachusetts, a coastal town north of Boston.
Last year there were 140 of us from around the country (and beyond!) who attended panels, demonstrations, talks, an art opening (Hot Stuff, juried by Zola Solamente of Arden Gallery in Boston), informal gallery discussions, and plenty of networking. My blog posts provide a good overview of the event. This year they expect the conference numbers to double, so if you are interested in attending you should make your decision as soon as possible. Check here for registration information.
I’m also pleased to announce that Joanne Mattera (author of The Art of Encaustic Painting) has asked me to participate in the conference by doing 2 demonstrations and a book signing for Embracing Encaustic: Learning to paint with beeswax.
My demonstration will be on Painting with Masks and Stencils to Develop the Image where I will reveal some of my favorite stenciling and masking techniques for protecting one part of the canvas while working on another. I use ordinary household materials to make marks and textures with my wax to form lines, shapes and imagery. For example, in the work shown here the shape of the bird was cut out of cheesecloth which was then used to mask the layers below as the white wax was applied, giving the piece much more depth than if I simply painted a bird. Using masks offers a simple way to develop striking forms using nothing but wax. I’ll also have a binder with images from many other artists that will also include notes on how they use masks and stencils in interesting ways. It’s my low-tech answer to not being able to do a slide show AND a demo in the same hour. My demo will be offered twice, in both the Saturday and Sunday conference roster. I hope to see you there!