Kids do Encaustics

Folks. I have done it. I’ve gone and made a video. You will not be seeing my face in this video, but you will be able to hear my Western NY accent slip in here and there.

It’s all about encaustics for kids, which means painting with wax. Traditionally, encaustic painting is done using a natural bristle brush with hot wax. You paint the wax onto a rigid surface, and you can layer it up, scrape it back, incise into it, collage onto it, pour it, pretty much anything goes.

The wax used in encaustic painting is a different consistency of the wax I am demonstrating for kids, and hardens when cool. The beauty of the wax used for this project is that it is soft and malleable without heating it (besides the heat from your fingers), thus making it safe as can be.

Without further ado, here is my video starring my man-looking hands:


And the finished products:

wax painting |

This painting is made using small blobs of wax, pressing them onto the surface and smearing them to the right. This technique highlights the transparency of the wax, and gives a sense of movement to the painting.


wax painting |

This painting has all sorts of stuff going on- pressed dots, coiled wax pieces built up into a cone, smeared wax in 2 colors mixed on the board, overlapping, and using the wax as lines.

Big tip: Use a hair dryer on low to warm up the wax as your kids work with it. Otherwise, their little fingers will get pretty tired.

This would be a fun medium to teach kids about Pointillism or maybe mixed media. I bet the wax would look cool over a paper collage. Actually, it’s extremely fun all on its own. Your kids will figure out exactly how they want to use it and make lots of wonderful things.

Here’s the skinny on where to pick up some of this stuff:

I bought mine at Blick Art Supply:

clay boards

Ampersand Clayboards. We used the 5×7.


wax works wax by Creativity StreetCreativity Street’s Wax Works. We used the bright hues, set of 50.

See another project using Wax Works here: Waxy Spiral Rainbow Art.




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