Something interesting happened in the studio yesterday.

Not having another workshop until August I decided to finally pull out an old completed painting that didn’t resonate with me anymore.  It’s a big long panel covered in encaustic, spray paint and R&F pigment sticks.  (An R&F pigment stick is oil paint manufactured with enough wax for the paint to be molded into stick form.)  Yes, I threw everything at this painting.  Oddly, the companion painting of the same size and materials was awarded Best in Show at a local gallery and sold a year later.

It was time to take out the big torch and get going on scraping all the materials back down to the wood panel.

It takes a few moments to get the surface warm enough to begin scraping.  Easy going on the encaustic sections, yet, when I torched over the pigment stick area something caught my eye and I stopped.  The deep encaustic layer was surging up through the top pigment stick section and creating some surprising results.  See left photo.

What’s possible with this effect?

I slowed down and tested other areas.  Same result.  Was it a result of age?

I tested for that and got a slightly different result.  OK.  We’re getting somewhere.  See photo on right.

The old painting is turning into an experimental board.  Glad I wasn’t in a rush to scrape the old away.  Calm and confident to sit with the confusion.