Encaustic Workshops

A new encaustic workshop series taught from an alternative, experimental approach and designed to address specific topics and techniques that reach far beyond the usual methods taught in typical encaustic workshops. Each workshop topic can be scheduled for 1 to 5 days or combined with other topics for 3-5 days. Please note that each description list the number of techniques included in each workshop for the maximum days taught. If the workshop is taught in combination with another or less than the maximum days, the techniques will be adjusted. Most materials are included for a nominal materials fee and all are open to beginner through advanced levels. Mini critiques and discussions of ideas and progress take place daily as well as a one on one critique discussion with each student and instructor. Please contact me to schedule a custom workshop specifically designed for the needs of your teaching facility. (Please scroll down for more basic encaustic workshops.)
Pattern & Repetition
Repeated use of a shape, color or design element unifies composition, creates pattern, rhythm and movement as well as reinforces content. This workshop focuses on the creation of intricate patterns, expressive personal surfaces and complex, multi-layered pieces utilizing and in combination with encaustic painting techniques. With an emphasis on mixed media, methods and materials covered in this workshop include the use of organic and geometric form, realistic and abstract imagery, patterned collage, stencils, candy molds, tjaps, and branding (creating marks with heated metal and wood burning tools). Considerations such as using pattern and repetition as content itself, to tell a story, support and/or strengthen the message will also be discussed.
Line & The Grid
Lines lead the eye and communicate information through variation in width, direction, density, length and character. They are as integral to any composition as the composition itself. Despite the incredible versatility of the encaustic medium, there is a limit to the techniques available in which to incorporate line. This workshop explores line and linear language far beyond the usual methods and materials to include the use of tjanting tools, masks, drawing with horse and human hair, branding with heated metal and wood burning tools, as well as creating your own grids, laces and lace like forms using free motion sewing machine embroidery on water soluble stabilizer. The workshop begins with a comprehensive exercise involving composition generation, which will result in several compositions from which to explore these new techniques. Considerations of the use of the grid as a conceptual as well as compositional tool will also be discussed.
This workshop takes the exciting combination of mixed media, encaustic and the photographic image far beyond straightforward collage to include innovative materials and mark-making techniques in which to explore narrative. During daily photo shoots, participants create images to use as inspiration and/or starting points for a series of focus during the workshop. Utilizing the natural luminosity, textural and layering possibilities of encaustic, participants will combine and collage photographic images created during the workshop with found images, marks and texture to explore, communicate, or entertain through narrative. This workshop covers basic encaustic techniques and collage as well as mark-making using horse hair, graphite paper and image transfer.
A lush, textured surface adds complexity, substance and reference to time passing. Because of the inherent properties of wax, the textural possibilities of encaustic far surpass that of any other painting medium. This workshop explores the myriad methods in which to create, add, embed and manipulate surface texture as well as more experimental and lesser known methods. Methods and materials covered in this workshop include the use of Tyvek and polyester, candy molds, parchment paper decals, incising, stenciling, plaster and paper clay. 
At its most basic, working in encaustic is about the layering of varying degrees of transparent paint. The correct use and application of such creates timeless works which reference memory, change and time. This workshop begins with the creation of personally designed fabrics and papers utilizing indigo, cochineal, rust and compost printing as well as silk paints, wax resist and bleach discharge. Also covered is the use of transparent papers such as trace and mylar paired with gouache and water based crayons and pencils and the safe incorporation of these materials into an encaustic painting. The application of thin layers of encaustic for collage, covering a board with fabric as well as the conceptual use of layers is also discussed. 

These workshops are taught from a hands-on approach, with an emphasis on mixed media. Mini critiques and discussions of ideas and progress take place daily. A slide lecture on the historical and contemporary applications of the processes and techniques discussed in each workshop is available for all workshops. In most cases, all materials are included for each workshop for a nominal materials fee. Please contact me to schedule a workshop for your teaching facility.

Mixed Media Encaustic (Beginner-Intermediate)
1-3 days

This workshop involves the exploration of encaustic, one of the most exciting and versatile mediums available to the contemporary artist. With an emphasis on mixed-media, the basics are covered as well as a variety of advanced techniques including equipment and safety issues, tools, grounds and substrates, application and painting techniques, fusing, color mixing, incising, sgraffito, creating texture, surface manipulation, image transfer, stencil, masks and collage. In addition to encaustic, participants will also explore the mark-making possibilities of branding, rust printing and composting and are encouraged to respond to these marks utilizing encaustic as well as other media. Participants are encouraged to develop a personal vocabulary by applying these new techniques to their current ideas.

Beyond the Basics Encaustic (intermediate-Advanced)
3-5 days

If you’re ready to take your knowledge of encaustic to the next level, then this is the workshop for you! With an emphasis on mixed-media, techniques and materials covered in this workshop include types of wax and their uses, making your own encaustic medium, use of the latest tools, powdered graphite, the textural and three dimensional possibilities of plaster and paper clay, creating patterns using stencils and masks as well as progressive painting and collage techniques including
how to best use transparency and opacity, blending, gradations, pours and utilizing horsehair as a drawing tool. Tips and suggestions for marketing your work and approaching galleries will also be addressed. Please note: Although it is helpful, it is not necessary to have had any previous experience with the encaustic medium in order to take this workshop.

Encaustic for Fiber Artists (Beginner-Advanced)
3-5 days

With an emphasis on mixed-media, this workshop is specially created to address the interests of artists working in fiber and fiber related techniques such as quilting, weaving and surface design. This workshop will cover the basics of working in encaustic as well as encaustic application techniques to enhance or create structure and texture, color mixing, layers, surface manipulation, and the creation of pattern using stencils, molds and tjaps. Working two or three dimensionally, participants are encouraged to develop a personal vocabulary and explore current content interests by combining the infinite possibilities of encaustic in combination with fiber structures, surfaces and stitch. Open to artists from beginning to advanced levels of development, no prior experience in encaustic painting is necessary.
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