The birthplace of all my work comes from my encaustic paintings. It is the love of the encaustic medium that pushes, drives, inspires and compels me to paint. My encaustic work will always be my first love and is the inspiration behind all other media and work that I produce.
I am drawn to the encaustic medium as I am constantly moved by the composure of the pigments, the fluidity of the wet wax and the peacefulness of the painting process. I like to think of the wax as an expression of who I am: fluid, constant, temporary and pliable.
The encaustic painting process is a lesson in harmony. Starting with a blank panel, I slowly add a mixture of pigmented beeswax and damar resin while simultaneously keeping the encaustic wax hot using a blowtorch and heat gun. Each piece is the result of layers and layers of wax that eventually fuse together to tell a complete story.
In my work I seek to capture the beauty and fluidity of the hot wax and pigments. In essence, I “freeze” this movement by allowing the wax to harden into a permanent state that is both visually striking and emotionally evoking. I hope my work connects with each viewer, allowing them their own personal and intimate reaction to the alchemy within each composition.
I am often asked how I decide upon the titles of my work. When naming a finished piece, I aim to leave the meaning open ended and a bit obscure. It isn’t so much a viewpoint that I am trying to convey as it is the opportunity I am seeking to give you, the viewer. I want you to connect into the recesses of your heart and soul. To feel deeply and to recall the meaningful and impactful parts of your unique life.
Without hesitation, I can easily say that painting and creating an emotional conversation through art has been my greatest joy. To be able to share a process that I find so inspirational and moving has been an immense gift. In my work, I am constantly asking myself how I can push and expand the encaustic medium. How can I continue to be innovative with one of the most ancient artistic processes. How can I best communicate the lines, the depth, the transparency that encaustic painting provides – but in another media.
This constant inquiry and exploration led to a new series where I digitally print original compositions onto metal.
Traditional encaustic paint is soft, never completely fixed. At any time the wax can be reheated to completely change the image. While this beautiful concept resonates with me as an artist, I’ve created works on metal in order to present my encaustic works the exact opposite of how they are by nature. The metal substrate is hard, heavy and textured while the encaustic paint is soft, light and smooth. The result is a story. A marriage of materials.
My works on metal were an exciting exploration because they do not limit me in size or substrate opportunities. The scale of work can range from a small jewel of a piece, to massive, multi-panel wall installation. When the substrate possibilities are countless the opportunity for unique, one of a kind art is nearly infinite.
Another benefit to working on metal is that this finished surface is more suitable to public spaces as the works are not nearly as delicate as an encaustic painting.
In 2015 I started experimenting with mixed media and reclaimed substrates.
The idea for this series originated from a desire to marry the smooth and fluid style of my encaustic work with the texture of other mediums and substrates in an innovative fashion.
The contrast between the wax, wood and metal not only intrigues me as an artist, but also elicits a strong tactile response from others. The art begs to be inspected, touched, evaluated. The contrasts between soft pliable wax, cold hard metals and warm marred wood are deeply moving and ask for contemplation.