encaustic photography



Encaustic is an ancient practice from the Greek word meaning “to heat or burn in” (enkaustikos). Heat is used throughout this process, from melting the beeswax and varnish to fusing the layers of wax. Starting with an original photo and transformed by fusing multiple layers of organic beeswax and resin to the image.  It is applied to a surface and reheated to fuse into a uniform enamel-like finish. Small scratches, fibers and other such “imperfections” are intentional as they add to the character of the piece.  Encaustic consists of natural bees wax and dammar resin (crystallized tree sap). Photographic encaustics are from photos I’ve taken, printed and mounted. I gradually apply the encaustic medium, layer by layer until I’ve reached a desired thickness.

This is a one of a kind image – unique in each and every way. Every piece produced in my shop is original artwork. The photograph is printed with archival inks and the wood is made of reclaimed products. These photographs are archival and won’t need to be framed. Encaustic works are very durable due to the fact that beeswax is impervious to moisture. Encaustic has a long history, but it is as versatile as any 20th century medium. It can be polished to a high gloss, can be modeled, sculpted, textured, and combined with collage materials.

These original photos are covered in encaustic beeswax embedded in a solid piece of wood which protects and gives the photo a beautiful texture and shine. The encaustic beeswax also gives these photos a dream like quality.

To keep an encaustic in good shape, avoid hanging in direct sunlight and exposing it to extremely cold temperatures for an extended period of time. There is no need to worry about melting the medium unless it’s sitting in temperature over 100 degrees.

The subtle beeswax scent is a bonus!