Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Alligators and Dragonflies, oh my!

The last few days I have periodically been working on a small dragonfly encaustic. The dragonflies are everywhere, and there are so many species. I was trying to use a new technique I had learned at the conference from last month, transferring a pencil drawing onto the wax, etching the outline, then adding oil pastel, and carefully adding another layer of wax medium to seal it. My biggest challenge was to not move the oil pastel once I added the top layer of medium and to keep the wax layer even but I will need to continue practicing this.

"3 Dragonflies", encaustic and oil pastel

My Louisiana "art" vacation is coming to a close although I will be leaving with an entirely new inspiration to be continued when I am back home. I have spent all my time in the country and yesterday finally made it to Avery Island where I saw the most incredible Cypress with Spanish Moss, old Oak trees, not to mention alligators, egrets, and cranes. We didn't get there until late afternoon but the heat is so intense that it was exhausting just walking around and taking pictures. I am happy to report there is no oil entering the bayou around the island (at least not at this point) and the local wildlife was abundant and visible.

I was in awe, the alligators seemed almost friendly!

On the island, there are over 200 species of bamboo. It was the first time I saw bamboo growing naturally outdoors.

Spanish moss covered all sorts of trees around Avery Island.

How old is this oak tree??

Bird nesting area, egrets can be seen on the right.


  1. There's something very soothing about dragonflies. I really like this but I can't imagine how you did such detail with oil pastels. Do they come in pencil form? That's the one medium I've never tried. Scribing into the wax and filling it with color sounds like a great technique.

  2. Hi Nancy,
    I did first transfer the pencil drawing onto the colored wax, then decided to etch an outline of the drawing into the wax, and once I covered the etching with oil pastel I carefully added a layer of the clear wax medium. I have so much more to learn still, but I am definitely having fun.