This weekend I was the teaching assistant for my friend, Elise Wagner, who taught an encaustic class at Oregon College of Art & Craft. We had a great group of all women (surprised?). Why don’t more men take encaustic classes I wonder? In any case we had a wonderful time and everyone traded techniques and learned from one another. I spent a lot of the first day running down electrical problems, but I was still able to finish 3 little pieces. After all, I got an hour back this weekend so why not use it for art?

OCAC - light and dark

I decided to try starting one painting with a black background and one with white. It was an interesting exercise as I had to think backward on the dark piece. If I decide to do it on a regular basis it will take some more practice!

OCAC pull lace

In the dark piece above I used a technique where you use lace as a stencil. Just put the lace on your smooth wax surface and paint right through it. After painting, scrape off the extra wax, lightly fuse and pull the lace up before it gets too cool. Beautiful!


This is my third piece, made with the scrap wax shavings on my table toward the end of the day, then enhanced with R&F pigment sticks and soft pastels. The texture at the top of the cloud is from that same lace I had been working with above. There was still wax on it so I used an iron to release it onto my board for a sort of ghost print of the original impression.

OCAC scrape Marty

I couldn’t resist this one. My new friend Mardy discovered the joy of scraping! This turned out to be just the beginning. The finished piece is on the right. Yes, that is the same piece! (Click on the images to see more detail.)


Libby went in a totally different direction, using pigment sticks on top of her wax to create a softer look.


Erin took her work in yet another direction layering image transfers one atop another to create a spectacular effect.

OCAC critique

We had a quick critique at the end of the day. Everyone left happy and ready to wax on!

OCAC critique

I’ll leave you with a sneak peek at what you’ll be seeing in the next 2 weeks as I get ready for the holiday shows that all want little work. I’ll be showing in Portland and Carmel through Christmas…

Holiday Lites Teaser

To view the whole sketches category, go here.