Today our guest was encaustic artist, author, and teacher, Linda Womack. Linda uses a variety of fascinating techniques in her multi-layered art and can effortlessly communicate about everything she is doing while she works. Her skills as an artist and as a teacher always draw a crowd of people who are curious about the art of painting with beeswax. Those who came to watch Linda work were treated to a full-afternoon demonstration packed with information.
Before she arrived today, Linda had prepared her wooden panel with a thick layer of joint compound which she had inscribed into and tinted with inks and watercolors. She explained that the many layers of encaustic painting are difficult to build up in one afternoon, so the joint compound gave her a head start of color and texture that is also absorbent enough and tough enough to serve as a good foundation to hold the wax.
As she built up layers of colored wax paint and clear wax medium, Linda included some drawings in her layers that she had made using tissue paper and walnut ink. The tissue paper disappeared into the wax, leaving the lines and colors of her drawings to blend into the layers.
In addition to adding colors with encaustic paint made of beeswax, damar resin, and pigment, Linda used india ink to heighten the contrast in certain parts of her painting. Although water-based ink will not cover the wax solidly and evenly, the ink works almost as a stain when allowed to dry a bit and rubbed into the wax.
Linda’s finished piece is full of texture and translucent depth, qualities that really show off the unique properties of encaustic painting.