Continuing the conversation

The last question to Jen Worden’s original 5 questions was to share a studio technique. I’ve been having a hard time getting to the computer these days- but with the help of my 11 year old, I made an Instagram reel of doing a photocopy transfer onto an encaustic surface. I’m a few weeks late, but here is my last answer to last month’s questions:

I normally get my photocopies done at our public library…or at least I did as our library is still closed due to the pandemic. I miss the library so much! I use an old spoon to burnish. I have many old spoons that I have purchased over the years at Goodwill or picked up at a rummage sale that I keep in my studio. But I have a favorite as it has the perfect ratio of roundness to flatness on the curve of the spoon. I don’t know how else to put it other than, you know it when you hold it. I usually have a spray bottle of water around to wet my paper. Though in this video I poured water as my spray bottle was elsewhere.

Bridgette Guerzon Mills | work in progress
Bridgette Guerzon Mills | work in progress

While I am never look for a perfect transfer- I like the cracks and faded parts- there are times that due to an uneven surface or uneven burnishing that a part doesn’t transfer. If it is small, I use a small brush and India Ink to fill in any missing parts. I love India Ink on a wax surface. You can use a brush and make marks/designs on the wax surface and let it set for a bit of time. Or you can wipe off- and leave a varied black/gray surface. The ink dries quickly, so the longer it takes you to wipe off, the less you are able to wipe away which can create an interesting surface. But again, it’s wax, so if you don’t like it, you can always use a razor blade or other sharp tool and scrape it away. The black and gray stripes in the above work in progress photo was made with India Ink. I also used the ink to fill in some blank spots in the tree branches.

Jen and I are going to continue these blog conversations, but one question a month. It’s fun to collaborate this way. And luckily she’s patient with me because I will eventually get to it, if not right away!


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