How does the encaustic painting process work?

Painting with encaustic medium involves melting the wax at no more than 220 degrees Fahrenheit in small metal tins (preferably with flat bottoms). Colour is then added, most often by squeezing in a small amount of oil paint. The more paint added, the stronger the colour will be. Be careful NOT to add more than 25% paint to 75% wax, or it will be unworkable. The coloured encaustic medium is then applied to the board/substrate (an absorbent and rigid surface) with a natural bristle brush. Then it is necessary to fuse. This can happen with the use of a blowtorch, heatgun, iron or even a light bulb. Each will give a different effect. Many layers can be added in this way. When the piece is finished it is a good idea to ‘buff’ it with a soft cloth, as it will add shine and translucence.

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