Saturday, July 10, 2010

Cajun Cottage in Cajun Country

After the 4th of July I headed south for a week; what a change of pace and lifestyle in Cajun Country, the area in Louisiana known as Acadiana. I wasn't sure how it would be, painting outdoors using a gas griddle not to mention working in the intense heat and humidity, plus I have been an urban dweller my entire life (we do have electricity, running water, and as of last night internet and TV!) I am with my fiance and this is his home when he isn't working in the Gulf of Mexico. The oil spill has slowed almost all platform and repair work and until BP gets everything resolved there is little to no work in what is usually the busiest season. The media has talked about the oil being on every beach along the coastal gulf states but so far there isn't oil right here. I hope to visit Avery Island this afternoon to take some photos and see the wildlife.

I was lucky I could use the front porch for my encaustic painting; it's been luxurious having the ability to setup outdoors with the AC running in the house steps away from where I am working. There is something very settling about hearing the crickets, the roosters and the occasional thunder, combined with the pitter patter of rain on a tin roof.

Pictured below is "Buddha in the Garden", 6 x 6 encaustic with black/white image transfer. This was my first piece and I was most concerned about figuring out the heat adjustments, using gas rather than an electric griddle. There are so many factors that effect the encaustic medium and I am still learning every time I paint another piece.

One of Terry's gardens, the photo used for the encaustic above still in color.

Setup on the front porch -

Sugar cane field next door -

Home to one of the sugar cane farmers -

My next painting will be a watercolor; every day I take new photos and when I get back home I will have an entirely new inspiration to keep me busy through the summer.


  1. I'm sure this has been a great adventure for you, aside from the fire ants you mentioned on FB... Your comment of the rain on the tin roof caused a moment of nostalgia for me. Thanks for that.

    So, is the gas griddle what was available for you there, or are you adding it to your encaustic arsenal?


  2. Hi Don -
    The gas griddle was already here which is why I didn't even try to transport my electric griddle. I haven't had much time to work on many of the techniques I learned about at the conference, but having to adjust to using gas without temperature controls has been my biggest challenge for now. I guess there is no rush, right? (although I do have several new works in progress)

    Yes, the tin roof is quite a trip when I am used to my city noises and busy street sounds! Gotta love that nostalgia. :)

  3. Beautiful country.I love Louisiana, but not the heat. It's worse than we have here in Georgia and that's hot. I can't imagine working with encaustic outdoors in such extreme heat. Do the bees bother you? Love the setting, the porch, tin roof, etc. It's the scenario of all the novels I love and brings back memories of a weekend I spent with an old flame at a fishing camp in Pensacola.

  4. Hi Eva,
    It has been so hot and humid, but I was able to setup right outside the cottage which allowed me to come in and cool down every so often. The wax has completely intrigued me and I become so consumed with the process that I forget how hot it is! Bees are here but not bothering me, it's the mosquitos I can't stand (and I use bug spray before I go out, too). The tin roof definitely creates ambiance, all kinds. :)