Most of my recent paintings are done with encaustic, which is appreciated for its luminosity and rich surface texture. In this ancient technique, pigments are applied in a medium of beeswax and damar resin. The resin contributes hardness, and the wax keeps the colors as fresh as the day they were painted despite the passage of time.
Encaustic paintings are built up in layers on a rigid wood panel. Each layer is fused to the one beneath with a heated tool – a tacking iron, heat gun, or torch. Artists exploit the layering effect by playing with the relative opacity of pigments. Some colors can produce a transparent glaze, more opaque pigments can seem to float on the surface. . The oldest existing examples of encaustic painting are the stunning funerary portraits from the Fayum district of ancient Roman Egypt.