Paint Cans
Q & A

What is encaustic painting?

Encaustic painting is hot wax painting. Pigments (oil paint) are added to beeswax and heated to create a liquid, colored wax that is applied to a wooden surface. Wood panels are the best to use for encaustic paintings because it will not warp and keeps the wax from cracking as it dries.

How do you heat the wax and apply it?

I heat the wax in a small cake pan on a griddle (yes, you're typical pancake, Black and Decker griddle) and use a palette knife to mix the oil paint into the wax. I then apply the hot wax with course brushes. The wax will obviously dry into the brushes so I have a different brush for every color to keep my colors from getting nasty and muddled.

Do paintings have one coat of wax or multiple layers?

Layers are essential to creating a complex and stunning oil & encaustic painting. Layers build depth and command more attention. I create one layer at a time, and since the wax dries so quickly, I am able to build upon the layers in a relatively quick manner. One might think that adding hot wax onto an existing layer would melt it and compromise  the layer's integrity, but the wax dries within seconds after hitting the surface so it doesn't stay hot long enough to melt the layer below it.

Can I embed things in the wax?

Yes! I love when clients want to add objects/materials to their oil & encaustic paintings. The list of additional materials is pretty open as long as they are relatively small and lightweight, but these are some of the most common ones just to give you an idea.

*Beads / stones

* Dried leaves / flowers / twigs

* Paper collage

* Gold & silver foil

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What if I don't know what colors I want exactly, but I have a specific room in mind?

Not everyone can envision what colors will look best together or what size painting will best fit their intended space. If that's the case, then send me some photos of your living room, bedroom, kitchen, etc and tell me what kind of vibe you want your painting to have, and I can pick the colors and aesthetic for you! Some people love being surprised like this, while others want total control of their art...The choice is up to you, but rest assured that I will treat the painting as if it was going into my home and create something that will stunningly compliment the space.

What if I don't like the art you create for me?

I always want my clients to be happy, and will not consider a piece finished until they are. If for some reason your painting doesn't turn out as you had envisioned then I will try my best to revise the current painting to your liking, and if you still aren't satisfied after my corrections, then I will recreate the piece free of charge.

I allow my client's one recreation with oil & encaustic paintings, so if you still aren't satisfied after that, then I will drop the project and keep both paintings and the 1/4 deposit that was paid upfront. So please try your best to clearly communicate with me what you want from the very start. Please also feel free to provide your own color palettes and texture examples too; anything to help me fully understand what you're wanting.

When do I pay?

Because materials are so expensive and I cannot afford to have a project dropped halfway through, I ask my clients to pay 1/4 of the cost up front as a deposit. That way, if you decide at the end that you don't like or want your piece, I can at least recover my cost of materials. Clients can pay via Paypal, Venmo or Etsy.

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Indianapolis, IN          taylormallatt@yahoo.com          765.421.1947