Friday, December 3, 2010

More encaustic explorations

It's been a crazy old week with a work trip to Sydney to prepare for, do, and write up but I have managed in some very in between moments to continue to explore the encaustic part of the world. It seems so many of the folk I connect with in this blogging world are interested in and exploring it at the moment - it's funny how things come together.

I made two attempts here - firstly I bonded the layer of rusted encaustic-ed tissue paper to an underlying piece of heavy written and smoked paper with more wax. I love the feel of the page that resulted; but I lost a bit of the translucency of the marks I had made on the tissue paper.

©Fiona Dempster - encaustic smoked text
©Fiona Dempster - encaustic smoked text 2
I then thought about simply lightly gluing the rusted, encaustic-ed tissue paper with marks onto some more paper that had simply been inked and marked. This approach kept more of the surface marking on the tissue.

The underlying page was torn from an old book. I then ruled through each line with a lovely old nib and ink and then 'wrote' across each line with a funny squiggly hieroglyphic 'script', entirely made up in the moment.

©Fiona Dempster - encaustic tissue-type
©Fiona Dempster - encaustic tissue-type2
I wonder what happens next if I encaustic the text-typed paper with marks and then lightly glue it? Or bond it with wax?  I think next week's experiments have just been laid out for me!

I hope to use pages like these in a book very soon.


  1. What a lovely effect - and very cool to learn of your process - you've created something in the present that immediately has an ancient classic feel to it, as if you were simply discovering the lost and dispersed pages of an old book and reuniting and reassembling them after a long separation across centuries...

  2. lovely experiments; souch rich layering. I love layers with text and revealing and covering and disguising. I have been reading a book on encaustic on the bus ride to work recently and the possibilities are so exciting; especially when you mix it with print and textiles ....

  3. ~just beautiful what you have been up to...they remind me of an old map...the colors and tuxtures...can't wait to see more of what you will be creating...i hope all is well with you and yours...warm wishes and brightest blessings~

  4. very interesting surface treatments; I love the weathered/time worn feel...
    Can't wait to see this applied in "the pages like these in a book very soon"!
    All the best!

  5. Fiona...these are beauiful and rich...and look as if you've unearthed from some long forgotten past. You will be making amazing work with encaustic, I know it!!! Enjoy the learning process!

  6. oh my god, that last photo is amazing!!!

  7. Ancient texts .... palimpsest .....secrets .... my imagination is skipping.

  8. So rich and yet delicate, these pages are full of mystery and possibilities. I've been amazed at how many sites I've come across about encaustics since you first started experimenting. I dabbled briefly with a friend a few years ago but wasn't impressed. Now I can see what I've been missing. I'm about to go back and read all your relevant posts again.

  9. Thank you all again - it's so lovely to engage with folk through art thoughts and pieces and hear your thoughts...

    TT?G - it is amazing how old they begin to look isn't it? They have no modern feel to them at all; yet I made them this week! More than happy to share processes - some helpful hints or understandings never go astray.

    Abigail - I am loving the layering, revealing, hiding thing that is happening here as well. I have always admired it in other work - never yet achieved it myself! I hope you find more inspiration in that book - it's lots of fun.

    FW - Yes, the sense of age just oozes from these pieces I feel. I hope they come together in a book feels precious and old and re-dsicovered in a way.

    Thanks Anna - yes they do appear blotches on concrete or stains or something.

  10. Hi Patti - Your beeswax work is so beautiful, it would be lovely to achieve that same sense of beauty with these. One of my favourite quotes is Michelangelo "Ancora imparo - I am still learning". I hope to keep learning forever! Go well.

    Velma - Thank You! A perfect piece of feedback!

    AP/Robyn - my mind too goes places, responds to the sense of the thing, connects it with feelings and memories, and glimpses of the past. It's lovely to know you have this response to it...

    Carol - it's intriguing isn't it how many folk are exploring encaustic - possibly in new ways, in combinations, and with their own expressions which resonate more than other approaches. A sense of mystery does linger with these pages - I hope you have fun exploring!

  11. Fiona, I'm so intrigued to see how you will use these wonderful pieces in a book. Your experiments make me want to get on with my own. I've got lots of rusted fabric but want to do it on paper and incorporate the beeswax with it. I think the act of layering the texts of old books with rusted tissue looks fabulous.I imagine you having one idea, leading to another, leading to another.... have fun. Lesley.

  12. Hi Leslie - the layering is so lovely - hints and glimpses and lots left to your imagination. Its funny you should mention one idea leading to another - I had an alternative to a book thought for these pages today!


I appreciate your thoughts and comments; thanks for taking the time.