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Use of Encaustic Paints on Solid GroundTM Panels

Encaustic paints can be used very successfully on Solid Ground panels.
Adhesion of the paints to the panels are excellent, and the non-absorbent
nature of the panels can give the paints an especially brilliant appearance.
However, since exposure of the panels to excessive heat can be a problem,
ultimate suitability will depend on your particular working techniques.

When the temperature of the panel is raised to approximately 160 degrees (F.)
it becomes soft, and any stress applied to it will cause it to bend
and become misshapen. If unsupported, gravity alone will bend the panel.
Briefly heating just one spot on the panel to that temperature involves less
danger, but a corner can still be bent, for example.

Encaustic paint manufacturers recommend keeping the temperatures
of their encaustic materials well below 160 degrees, and in fact most artists
work with lower temperatures. And while it takes prolonged exposure
to the heat source for the panel itself to reach that temperature [and especially
over a wide area], some painters may decide that they would just rather not
deal with that concern at all.

A few techniques should be of particular concern. Artists who like to work
on a heated panel [heating the entire panel from behind, for example]
in order to have a warm surface to work on, should probably avoid
Solid Ground. Painters who like to maintain a very molten and soupy surface
on their panels face the greatest risk of softening the panels, although
if the panel is kept flat and is well supported from behind on a flat surface,
that is not necessarily a problem, as the panel will harden again as soon as
its temperature drops. Only you can decide for yourself how relatively
careful or off-hand you are with your heat sources.

For more information about encaustic paints, please see our Links page
and visit our friends at Encaustikos! and R&F Handmade Paints.


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