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Archive for the ‘Encaustic’ Category

Encaustic/Fiber Day Three

Thursday, August 6th, 2015


Are you tired of seeing this piece? Here is the final incarnation of what I was calling a hot mess. When I came into the classroom this morning, my first goal was to work on the pieces I had started and figure out how to finish them. I added more wax to this one to seal in the collaged materials, then scraped wax and added a bit more black. It was telling me it wasn’t finished. My tablemate had an electric encaustic tool that you could dip in wax and then make fine lines. I grabbed some cadmium red and borrowed the tool and added some graffiti and wow! I loved it as did the teacher.


This brown silk piece was needing something, too and there was too much wax medium which was obliterating some of the details. Lorraine demonstrated how to use a stencil on our work so I grabbed some sequin waste and added the turquoise dots and then threw some turquoise pigment in the other corner. The dotted area is finished off with a blending of brown Shiva paint stick. Then I went to work with the razor blade and the little mini-iron. Here is how it looks, now. Lorriane thinks it needs something else.


The cheesecloth piece was making me very happy after the wax had dried, but it needed a focal point. I picked up a magazine at the store last night and started looking for things I might collage in the work. I found several bits with varied stripes and I like what happened. Lorraine said this was her favorite of my work. Now that I know how to stencil with the wax, I can see how I could make little rectangles of color using pigmented wax. Just to recap, I started with a piece of hand-dyed cheesecloth that was rusted, adhered to the board and then branded before the final wax coating and collaging.


Lorraine encouraged us to do some drawing with wax to show the hand of the maker. I had an indigo dyed dryer sheet which I adhered to a board, covered with wax medium and then drew circles with the cadmium red.


I had an indigo pigment oil stick that I picked up at Dick Blick and rubbed the piece with it. I love what happened.


I had time to do one more piece. I just love the idea of using my unique fabric as a base for encaustic work so I grabbed a piece of shibori silk organza and adhered it to a board and went at it with a brush and wax. I also had some copper foil with me which I rubbed on to the piece.


I felt it needed a focal point so I started looking for things from the magazine. Not sure this is it – still needs some work.


I enjoyed this so much. I am feeling that I want to pursue encaustic as a second medium for my work. Hope I can make it work.




Encaustic/Fiber Day Two

Wednesday, August 5th, 2015

encaustic1 with collage2015-08-05 12.13.43-1

We started today by putting yesterdays pieces on the table and critiquing them for composition. She then showed us how adding elements can enhance or improve a composition. She thought the black lines on my piece were two big and that I should scrape them down. I collaged in piece of a net onion bag and some horsehair lines. I just love the look of the lines made by the horse hair. Almost everyone in the class loves this piece, but me not so much. I really like a simpler more serene composition. I think changing the orientation to the top one, helps.

Next on the agenda was learning to wrap a board with fabric. I had a nice piece of funky dyed silk that I think Kristin La Flamme might have given me. To wrap the fabric, you put a very light layer of wax on the board and then press the fabric on the board and smooth it and iron it with a Clover mini-iron to adhere it to the wax.

fabric to board

Then, the board edges and back are carefully waxed and the fabric is wrapped and the corners are trimmed and ironed down.

fabric corners


Next, we used a soldering iron like tool to burn marks into the top.


Here is this piece with more wax and some horsehair spirals. The wax was not completely dry so it is still opaque in areas.

silkencwith horsehair:wax

Here is a board wrapped with the rusted cheesecloth fabric with marks burned into the surface.


I then covered it with wax and added some pigmented wax and some perle cotton. The wax was not dry on this when I left.


I am enjoying the class so much. I got to have a session with Lorriane and she looked at the encaustic I have done and my art quilt portfolio. She saw a definite relationship with how I approach art quilt composition and my encaustic compositions. That felt good.

This and That

Tuesday, August 4th, 2015


I promised an update on what has been going on in my life. First of all, lots of good things. Mr C and I got to take a preview ride on the new Orange light rail line that crosses the Willamette on a brand new bridge and goes out through our old neighborhood. We watched it all being built for the last few years. So that was fun.

My art quilt daughter, Kristin La Flamme and her family, have made the move to Portland. I am so excited to have them here. There worldly goods are not arriving until the end of this week and so I had them over for dinner in our air conditioned condo on a 100° plus day. The highlight was the homemade peach ice cream that I made.

We also had a double date with Lisa and Clay and saw the very funny Amy Schumer movie, Train Wreck.

Icing on the cake was a visit with my long time interwebs friend, Mary Manahan from Philadelphia, whose daughter is starting law school at Lewis and Clark.

My disappointment last week was not getting into the High Fiber Diet Making Our Mark show. It is the first time I have not had a piece in the annual show. Such a bummer. I was really despondent and had a crisis of confidence regarding my work. Here are thumbnails of the the two entries:


I will be interested to see the pieces that did make it in. Some were given alternate status, meaning they would get an airing when the venue was large enough. I’m sure glad I am not an alternate – that would tie up two pieces for over a year with no guarantee of being in an exhibit.

I did, get great news a couple of days ago. Ode to a Tree made it into the Oregon SAQA show and if I had a choice of shows to be in, it would be this one. They have quite a few venues lined up already. Here is a thumbnail of Ode to a Tree:


There was one other fail which I can’t discuss at this point. I might show the piece at some point.

The piece up at the top is almost finished for my July master class – late because I had a heck of a busy end of July. The theme was rhythm. I have to finish quilting it when I get home. I really like it

I am currently on the coast in Lincoln City in a cabin with Mr C and Scooter. We arrived last night.We are staying in a cabin at this funky motel on a cliff looking out over the Pacific Ocean.


We awoke to a beautiful sunny morning.


Today was day one of a mixed media/encaustic/fiber workshop with Lorraine Glessner at the Sitka Art and Ecology Center. It was awesome. I felt so refreshed and relaxed and happy when I came back to the cabin tonight.

Here is Lorraine getting ready to lecture.

lorrIaine Glessner

Our first task was to learn about how she rusts fabric and do some of our own. Here is a sample of her rusted silk.


Here is my salt water soaked fabric with rusty bits doing their thing. I have a piece of dyed cheese cloth that and a couple of pieces of cotton.


Here are some of the goodies that we are working with.



We started out just learning how to use the wax and to scrape it to expose layers. She made us get up and move to another persons piece and add a mark and some wax and we kept moving around the room. It was very liberating to leave our precious piece to others and to them work on someone else’s piece. I really liked what had happened to mine when I came back to it.

Here it is:


Here is how I left it tonight: (iPhone photo is a quite blurry, but I really love it.)


So, there we go. I have such a great life. I have to move on and not let one disappointment take me down.

Just took this at the end of our street.


A Great Day

Saturday, February 18th, 2012

I took this photo of Lisa and Clay last week while in San Francisco. Today, Clay asked Lisa to marry her and she said, yes! Clay had confided in me when she was here for Christmas and I even helped her select the ring. I felt so honored to be her confidant. We are so happy to have Clay become a part of our family. I think the wedding won’t happen until 2013 and hopefully, by then, marriage between same sex couples will finally be legal.

Another fantastic thing happened for Lisa this week. The biannual invitational at the Contemporary Jewish Museum in San Francisco opened and her piece sold on the first night – $2500!! So proud of her.

This morning, I had fun with our encaustic adventure at Trinity. It was a great group of students. Serena Barton, our teacher, said it was one of her best group of students. Here is some of the work that was done.

I did three pieces – two with textiles. This piece has a couple of strips of shibori indigo in it.

For this piece, I printed a photo of one of my aspen quilts on silk and encased it in wax. I overworked the piece trying to blend the edges. The photo was a rectangle and the board was square. I would like to try this again with better proportions.

This is the last piece I did — in about 10 minutes. It was fun to just go wild with the beeswax paints.

We all agreed that we want Serena to come back and for a full day.

Tonight, we went to the symphony which was being recorded for a cd. We were cautioned to be very quiet and it was hysterical to hear the coughing every time there was a break.

I bet you thought I didn’t have time to do a 3 x 3 today, but here it is . A quicky felted piece.


Minding My Beeswax

Saturday, March 5th, 2011


Or this?

I had such a good time at the encaustic class this morning. We had a bit of drama when the instructor didn’t show up on time. I finally found her phone and called her. She was in a taxi on her way because her car was stolen over night. Thankfully, she had not packed all of her supplies.

I am not sure which orientation I like for the piece up there. It is the second piece that I did. You can click on images to see them larger.

Here is the first which has collaged items.

But, let me start at the beginning. This is a butane torch which is an essential tool!

First, you have a painting board on which you layer plain beeswax.

Then, it is fused to the board using the torch. You build up a few layers, this way.

You can smooth put waxy bumps with this tool.

Next, you start painting on the wax layers.

And fuse them.

It is fun to see how you can move the wax around with the torch and get an interesting surface.

Once you get the background, you can start adding collage items, such as a photo.

Here is Serena’s final collage sample that she demonstrated for us. The writing is done with a special wax  crayon.

Time to work on our own. I grabbed this sheet of laser printed photos. I liked the architectural photos which would look good with some of my fabric bits.

Here is my base of colors before I started collaging. You can see some of my fabrics bits. It went through several layers and waxings to get the final piece which is up above.

For my second piece, I wanted to do some scratching through the surface to reveal black wax so I painted a black wax base first.

Then I forgot to photograph any more! But you can see the end result up above. I kept adding lines of color and when they were cool, I used a clay carving tool to scratch into the surface and then went at it with the torch.

I really love that piece as I had an idea of what I wanted to do and pretty much achieved it.

Here is a display of all of the work. As you can see most people did collages except for Jonathon and I!

Here is Jonathon’s small landscape and he did the abstract blue and white with the nice brush strokes.

This was so much fun. I hope to take another class. I am not sure I want to invest in all the stuff until I decide rather this is a new medium for me.