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Alla prima

From the Italian word which means: at once. Rather than build colors up by layering, the painting is done while the paint is still wet. Or in the case of encaustic- still warm.

This method is best suited for oil paint and is loosely followed with encaustic. This technique would seem quite impossible, yet never-the-less, encaustic does remain soft and pliable; particularly when the panel is small enough to sit on a heated surface. This technique works well on ceramic; which holds the heat for long periods of time. A tool that might serve well for alla prima encaustic is the burnisher.

Placing your panel on a heated surface allows for the wax to stay soft; it can be pushed and manipulated with tools which allow for incising or marking the wax. For more info. see Inlay or Intarsia, Intaglio (Includes: Engraving, Incising, etc.), Scribe, Twisted Scribe, Needles, Pins, etc., Carving Tools, and Metal Sculpting Tools. If the heat is set high the surface will liquefy and stay until cooled; but this has its disadvantages: the wax will literally spill off a unleveled panel, a level panel that has a large amount of liquid wax will spill easily too, colors can become muddled, and lines and shapes indistinguishable. The best method of this technique is to work thin and then remove from the heat to work on thick and detailed areas or work in a semi-soft state by continually warming the surface with the heat gun or tacking iron.

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---------------------------------------{ A Note to Readers }---------------------------------------

Revisiting old topics and filling in holes is quite a chore, yet a necessary one, one that will offer more quality information. For example: recent activity and questions surrounding hardboard and/or masonite, has directed our attention to fill in the blanks on that topic (currently under revision/addition), as well as, more about gesso (specifically encaustic gesso) and other topics (search the tabs), all are in the works. 

Prior years were to get as much general information as possible up and available- a starting point. More and more however, new topics are focused and detailed, and old ones will be getting revisiting; removing any possibility of confusion. 

I should point out that this is a one person operation (takes me awhile to get around to everything, ohh yeah, I should make some art), Anyway, where was I?, oh! one person operation..., even though I tend to refer in posts and topics as we, it is to remove the need to revisit things later when it really is we. All of this whilst working, making art, and whatever may be the case.

As always, I welcome any opinions, comments, and questions- simply contact me.

Thank you
Jonathan Parks