Making Your Own Encaustic Medium

When I am teaching a workshop, I am always asked about the process of making your own Encaustic Medium. I have decided to lay it all out for you here, so you can decide for yourself whether to invest in the process, or leave it to the professionals!

It’s really just a matter of deciding if you’ll be using great quantities, in which making your own would then be a good idea, and if you have the time and the interest. I personally love making Encaustic Medium. It warms me up to the play at hand; I find it relaxing…and you can’t beat the smell! Besides, I (and my students) would quickly go broke if I didn’t make it myself for my workshops. It really keeps the cost of an encaustic workshop down!

Here’s what you’ll need to do it right:

  • Unbleached pharmaceutical grade beeswax (buy at least 5 lbs.)
  • Damar Resin (1 lb.)
  • 2, yes 2 (I use 3, even better!) Electric Skillets with lid and temperature gauge
  • 1 measuring cup you can ruin (one or two cup quantity)
  • 1 Wooden Spoon you can ruin
  • 1 Sieve you can ruin
  • Microfiber Cloth (look in the automotive section of the drugstore) 
  • Paper Towels
  • Nitrile disposable gloves 
  • Optional: Silicone Mat or Silicone Bowl
  • Ventilation (I have a vented kitchen fan above my encaustic station. You might use a window with a box fan blowing out. By the way, that’s a bad plan for those of us who have actual winters!)

Here we go! Click on the first picture to get the full tutorial:

I usually make two batches at a time in my three skillets, and it’s a bit like a juggling match. If I’m really cranking, I do my last pour into a Silicon Bowl, then I wrap, label and stack my beautiful slabs. I was a little low on supplies when I made this tutorial so I didn’t give you the grand circus of wax juggling and pouring. At any rate, I hope you enjoyed yourself and maybe learned something!

Until next time! –Linda 


About Linda Lenart McNulty

I am an artist with a spirit to share, inspire and heal others through my work, which is currently exploring the Awakening of the Santos Cage figurative form in sculpture and intaglio painting. My quest is to channel art through Spirit, while bringing others into connection with their creative selves, using the joy of life, the gift of color and the discovery of form as vehicles to expression. Find me at:
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2 Responses to Making Your Own Encaustic Medium

  1. This looks amazing! Will you be teachhing anywhere in 2015?

    • Hey Leslie! I am teaching locally in 2015! Come take a trip to Oberlin. I set up my workshops to accommodate travelers by making them a 2 day workshop on the weekends once a month. Pick one that you like and come on over! Really, we have such a blast in these workshops and you can get so much more personal attention than when I am on the road. You should really consider it. Just check out my workshop page. I hope to see you! take care, Linda 🙂

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