Tuesday, March 5, 2013

From Beginning to End Part 1

I've started my largest encaustic piece to date. It measures 24"x36". My talented son Riaz made the cradled board canvas beautifully.  It is so pretty I am tempted to leave it as is, then I remind myself what it was created for.
My sister  made a suggestion that has been incubating and I think this piece would be good for her idea to record the process of making one of my encaustic painting.

The concept I have for this piece is to create layers of rust marks on translucent paper to give an organic  look to it as if the piece was created 100's of years ago and then nature added it's marks along the way. I want light to shine through the piece, so I need a white ground.

The first step is to prepare the board with white gesso. I use Tracy Willan's recipe for gesso. It took about 5 layers of gesso, taking 2 days with drying time to get a smooth white finish. Being a natural product the gesso has a earthy smell to it as it dries. Some would say it unpleasant but I like it, it reminds me of our horse barn when growing up.
Not the best picture, it has been snowing and overcast , so not much light in the studio today
While the canvas is drying I continue to make the rust prints that will be used in the painting.

Just the beginning, lots more to go
 It has taken about a week to make all the prints I will use.
My favorite part comes next...painting the rust prints, using oils, inks and rust. I'm going to do a lot so I can choose the best for the piece.

The rust prints are ready to be adhered to the canvas. 

The pieces' first layer is a beautiful feast for the eyes.

I could be perfectly happy to leave the canvas just like this, at least for a while, yet I am eager to add the first layer of beeswax and resin....stay tune.

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