Monday, March 10, 2014

Art in Wax and Interview with Hazel Rayfield

I have another interview today and this one is quite personal.  I have known Hazel on-line for a very long time and I even own a piece of her work.  She encouraged me to have a go at encaustic Art,  sometime ago.  It was not for me,  but I am in awe of what Hazel can produce using wax as a medium.  Take your time to visit her webpage and browse the wonderful work she has on offer.

and perhaps follow her on facebook

What is the main, Art/Craft you are known for?

I am an artist with a passion for painting in hot wax, often referred to as Encaustic Art.

I love to paint to flowers, Landscapes and Seascapes mostly.

Is this a full time job?/Second income/ Or hobby for you?

I am self employed and my art is now part of my career portfolio, having started as a hobby.

Together with being an artist, I am a web developer and have been creating websites and web graphics for many years, my first commercial website went live in 1998, but in the past year I have stepped back from this side of the business to focus more on my art and the now only work part time on web design.

I paint most weeks, at times most days, it is a balancing act, being an artist that sells their work isn't just about creating art I have found, but marketing, admin, accounts etc. also plays at part. Self promotion is hard but also an essential part. 

How long have you been doing it?

I have painted in other mediums for many years but started painting in wax in 2011.

Could I have a little potted history of your creative life please?

I am a self taught artist, I have always been a creative person and have painted on and off since I was a teenager, I have experimented with oils, acrylics and watercolours in later years. When I first painted it was in Oils then Acrylics, and after a break of several years I was given a set of watercolours which revived the painter in me, I had still been being creative in my work, but found art was something I wanted to do more of, I still enjoy my watercolour doodles but my passion is for my hot wax painting.
I discovered encaustic wax art at the end of 2010, the vibrant colours and the shine of the artwork was unlike anything I had seen before and I knew this was something I wanted to try. I bought some wax and heat tools in the Spring of 2011 and started to experiment. As an artist painting in hot wax, I find I can create the texture I loved with Oils and Acrylic but with a movement and vibrancy unlike anything I have used before.
I first showed me work online in the summer of 2011 and was amazed at the response, and now sell my work internationally with pieces of Art In Wax now in homes in Europe, the US and Australia.
Art In Wax has featured on TV as examples of encaustic art and been seen in several magazines over the past couple of years, and on several websites as guest blogger and interviews.
I paint as large as A3 size but also as tiny as 1x1 inch which are doll house paintings, I was commissioned to paint a set of dollhouse originals in 2013 when a lady who owns one of my larger pieces asked if I would paint for her Georgian Manor house, this has lead me to painting more miniatures which have been very popular, my husband built me a 1:12th scale Art Gallery which houses a large collection of my miniatures.

What do you love most about what you create and the process of creating it?

The colours, texture and sheen that the finish pictures has is what draws me to paint in wax.

Working with wax is a challenge and this is one of the things I love about it. I love to experiment and it is  exciting to see what can be done with wax as a painting medium.

Is this your total creative output or do you also work in other areas and if so what are they?

I am in the main an artist and painting in hot wax is my passion.

I paint using different types of wax and support so the work I produce is varied. I use heated irons and stylus tools with encaustic wax blocks, sometimes using hot air, brushes, and a hotplate too. Most of this work is onto a specialist gloss card. These paintings have a thinner layer of wax and are dry within minutes of finishing.  

I also paint with a different type of wax, a handmade beeswax medium which I paint onto wood panels. This is a different formal of wax and I do this melting the wax in tins on a hotplate and appalling with larger brushes then heated with hot air to fuse layers of wax, these pieces take  a few months to fully cure and need to be looked after in a different way.

Do you think that its important to specialise in one area or to have lots of creative outlets?  Can one impact on the other, in positive or negative ways?

For me its all about painting, I do create a variety of artwork but having been a creative person in different formats most of my life I think it is up to the individual.

What gets you out of bed in the morning and motivated to create wonderful things?

That's is an easy question, I just love to paint. Mornings are my favourite time of day and when I am at most most creative so once I am up I am ready to paint.

Do you have the support of friends and family when crafting and do you and they value what you do?  

My family and friends are very supportive. My husband encourages me to paint and to show my work, he also tells me when I've not got it right too, sometimes it is hard to see for ourselves so his support is invaluable to me. 

I have made friends because of being an artist as well, which is great, as like minded people are a great support and encouragement. 

I know my friends and family value what I do, they are excited for me when I show my work or sell a piece. Most of them have a piece of Art In Wax, on request I might add !!! Some have even commission me to paint for them to give as gifts.

Describe what your prefect Art/crafting day would be like?

Up early, the light is best then, tea and toast by 6 -7am and into my studio area. 

Fire up the irons, stylus and maybe hot plate, prepare my workspace, I keep the wax tidied away when not in use, and then paint in hot wax till coffee break ….... I normally have a plan of what I want to achieve in a session, I may have sketches of ideas I want to try or maybe paintings specifically for a project or commission.

If I am doing larger pieces I stand to paint so by coffee time I'm ready for a sit down! when painting smaller pieces, miniatures, cards and ACEO's I sit and at my work desk, hours will fly by  when the wax is flowing …..... I normally finish mid afternoon.

When I'm finished waxing …... then comes the clean up, I make a lot of mess when working, but like to know I have clean slate for the next session so all surfaces and tools get a clean up …... and so do I.

Once cleaned up I may mount some pieces and photography them to show.

What are your aims and goals for the future

I have lots of things plans for 2014, I have been invited to be artist of the month for a local art club and Art In Wax is to be featured in a miniatures magazine in the summer which is great fun. 

I am a keen blogger and write about techniques and my experiments working in wax as well as what new with me and my work, plus we have made several videos of me painting in hot wax, which all helps promote my Art In Wax and I will doing more posts and demonstrations too.

But most of all my plan is to paint more pictures in hot wax …... simple as that!


  1. Lovely interview from a very talented lady.

  2. lovely to read of people's success stories.

  3. A lovely interview, there is a lot involved with hot wax painting and Hazel is very good at what she does. :)

    Jan x

  4. Fab interview and lovely artwork - an interesting read.

  5. Lovely interview, I'm a big fan of Hazel's work and am lucky enough to have bought quite a few pieces all of which I treasure!

  6. Great to read about other artists and Hazel's work is beautiful

  7. Lovely interview her work is fab I have a piece of her art.