Frequently Asked Questions
- What is encaustic painting?
Encaustic painting is an ancient painting process involving molten pigmented beeswax applied with heat gun or blowtorch.
The word encaustic originates from the Greek word enkaustikos which means to burn in, and this element of heat is necessary for a painting to be called encaustic.” Wikipedia.com
Encaustic painting possesses wonderful spontaneous virtues of working with texture and colours and its versatility with building up layers and the possibilities are endless! Elements such as objects or images can be layered in-between the layers of encaustic medium
- What is the encaustic medium?
The encaustic medium is made of molten pure beeswax and damar resin (at a specific ratio) to which natural pigments are added. I will show you how to make your own which is less expensive in the long run and create your own vibrant colours. Of course, you can also purchase ready-made medium. After the workshop, I will provide you with a list of reputable suppliers. The materials you will be using during my workshops are of the highest quality and purity.
- What support will we be using?
Encaustic medium will adhere to a variety of porous and absorbent surfaces. During the workshop you will be provided with squares of already primed boards. Most participants leave with 4 to 5 finished works. There are no limitations in the number of works you wish to create, the more the better!
- Do I need painting experience to learn encaustic painting?
The great thing about encaustic painting is that it can be enjoyed by everyone: absolute beginners and developing artists alike. My ‘introduction to encaustic painting’ workshop is designed for everyone: mostly people who have never practised encaustics and wish to discover this wonderfully versatile medium. During the day long workshop, I will introduce you to the basic techniques of encaustic painting, sharing its spontaneous virtues of working with texture and colours and its versatility with building up layers. You will have the opportunity to learn easy and effective techniques in a fun and relax atmosphere and create beautiful artworks to bring home.
The advanced workshop is suitable for artists or art enthusiasts with a basic knowledge of encaustic, wanting to know more. The class will expand your understanding of encaustic, help you refine your work by gaining more control over the medium and help you move your encaustic painting to a new level.
- Is it a dangerous or toxic medium?
Just like all art mediums, beginners need to be made aware of all health and safety issues. I will show you how to set up your working space safely and efficiently. The encaustic medium is warmed up on a hot plate. The best temperature is between 150-175 C. It should never be over 200C. This is extremely important as it will prevent fumes and keep the materials integrity.
I do have special surface thermometer on my hotplate which allows us to keep the encaustic medium to the right temperature. Applying the encaustic medium is as dangerous as ironing cloths! I will show you how to apply it safely. The blowtorches used during the workshops are mini ‘crème brulee’ blowtorches which are very user friendly. Good ventilation or a constant flow of fresh air from a window or door is also highly recommended if not primordial.
- Do I need to bring anything to the workshop?
All materials, support and tools are provided on the day. You will work with the best quality materials such as pure beeswax and R&F pigments. Participants also like to bring materials, ranging from photocopies, found papers, scraps of fabric, pictures, letters, labels, pieces of fabric, drawings, stamps, etc, which can be included in their own works, but this is not compulsory at all. Also, please bring painting apron or painting cloths; encaustic can be a messy business!
- Do I need to take notes during the workshop?
You will leave with a printout containing all the information you need to get you set up if you wish to pursue this wonderful medium as well as a list of suppliers. I prefer attendants focusing their attention on making and creating instead of trying to write all the information provided and missing on gaining expertise with the medium!
- Do I need to bring food for lunch?
For workshops taking place in my studio: A light healthy lunch is provided. I will ask each participant beforehand if they do have any food allergies and intolerance.
Teas, coffee and herbal teas are made on demand throughout the day.
For workshop taking place in Dublin: At 1 pm, we’ll stop for lunch – this is a nice time to reflect on the morning’s work, chat and unwind. You can bring a pack lunch or the venue situated in the city centre find a nice spot to grab some lunch.
- I wanted to book a particular workshop, however it was full, do you have a waiting list?
Due to the high demand for my workshops this year, all places on all workshops are limited and sold on a first-booked, first-served basis, which means that you will need to secure your space via eventbrite/my website as early as possible to avoid disappointment.
Alternatively, If the workshop is full, you will always have the option to be on a waiting list . Please send me an email here and I will put your name down on my waiting list, there is always hope!
- Do you have a Workshop Refund & Cancellation Policy in place?
If a registrant is unable to attend the workshop, they can have an alternate person attend in their place. If a substitute cannot be found, I will accept cancellations and issue refunds under the following conditions:
- The cancellation deadline is no more than two week before a workshop for 50 % refund, and 4 weeks for full refund. Unfortunately no refund one week before.
- No refunds will be provided if the registrant is a “no-show” at the workshop.
- If I cancel a workshop for any reason, all registration fees will be fully refunded or people may accept a place in a workshop taking place at a later date.
- How will I know more about the workshop I have just booked?
Once you register, you will receive a notification from the website that you are in ! Closer to the date of the workshop, I will provide you with all information necessary to have you set up on the day, directions to the venue and how to prepare for your workshop session (schedule of the day, what to bring, dietary requirements …).
- I really enjoyed the workshop and want to keep at it, yet I do not have a studio; can I do this at home?
You do not need a studio to work with encaustics, just a well ventilated area you do not have to worry about the mess! A table is enough, with electric point close by for the hot plate and heat gun and area to create…Alternatively you can book your space for my monthly drop-in sessions now available for returning students and mostly those who do not have their own studio and would like to continue with a more relaxed class and enjoy the freedom to continue to experiment with encaustic painting and deepen their experience of this versatile medium. Come and be inspired! More information here.
- Still have questions?
I am here to help and I enjoy keeping in touch so please do not hesitate dropping me a line here if you need more information about encaustics or my workshops.
You can alternatively watch my videos on my artist page:
Thank you so much for your interest in my workshops and hoping to share with you this incredible medium in the near future!