Encaustic Collage on Wood
Hey all. This week Kelly Boler from Book and Paper Arts, one of our talented Mixed Media Design Team Members, created a captivating Encaustic Collage on Wood for us. As you know, we feature one new Mixed Media project each week created by one of our fascinating team of artists. We want you to be totally inspired by this series! Therefore, please make sure you check out the video tour at the bottom of the page…please scroll all the way down to see it. Are you ready to be inspired? I will step out of the way and let Kelly tell you all about her charming techniques…
About My Mixed Media Artwork
This month’s mixed media project involves creating a piece of encaustic collage on wood. The word encaustic means to burn or fuse, and it is the term used for working with melted beeswax. In this case we fuse many layers of wax with layers of paper ephemera. The result is dreamlike and the simplest of layouts become an instant mystery. You can see this in the close up below.
Working with Wax
There are many ways to work with wax, but after much trial and error, I found that a mini-hotpot (similar to those used in salons) and beeswax pellets work best for me.
My substrate for this artwork is spruce board. However, you can use a variety of surfaces. I have even used the covers of old books and children’s board books. After the wax pellets have melted in the hotpot, the resulting liquid wax is painted onto the surface and a layer of paper is added. It is then fused together using heat. Another layer of paper is added along with an additional layer of wax. It is then heated again while making sure that all of the layers are binding together.
The image becomes translucent once coated in the melted wax. This enables you to see details from every layer even after it has been covered with several others. As a result, I like to use simple and contrasting patterns.
Ephemera Used for Encaustic Collage
Anyone who has followed my work here on The Graphics Fairy knows how much I am obsessed with their many offerings in the print, parchment, and script bundles at the Premium Member Site, such as the ones used in this piece from the Script Ephemera and Ephemera Collection images kit.
This is just one more reason to enjoy their abundant possibilities. Other good choices for adding layers on layers to create a cohesive, one-of-a-kind background are Vintage Paper Lace, Junk Journaling, Blank Papers & Parchment, or one of the several sheet music choices HERE, HERE, or HERE. After I created a background of three layers of ephemera and wax, I added a focal point. In this case we have a blue bird from the Birds & Botanicals Image kit perched on a French postcard from the Vintage Postcard bundle.
To add interest and complete the Encaustic Collage on Wood layout, I added embellishments in the form of bird eggs cut from the Birds and Nest Ephemera bundle and a French postage stamp from Ocean Blues Ephemera bundle.
I added two more layers of wax to this finished piece, fusing well between each. I then used an awl to score rough outlines around some of the elements. Coloring was incorporated using a wax pastel. The end result is a fine finished piece of encaustic collage.
Video Show & Tell
To see a short video of the Encaustic Collage on Wood piece, please go to my YouTube channel:
Be sure and stay tuned to the Premium Members Site where there will soon be a Tutorial video. It will show how this piece was created.