Frequently Asked Questions regarding Master Paste Original Cold Wax Encaustic Medium
What basic tools are needed to work with MPO
A good table top, a plate glass mixing slab is ideal, but sheet stainless steel or other 'clean' surface can be used for colouration of the medium. A mixing knife / firm bladed palette knife is good for mixing the colour into the Master Paste Original medium. Whatever palette knife type tools you like can be tested as tools for applying the MPO to your substrate. Finally, for the fusing process, a controllable gas torch (low flame not fierce), a hot air gun (controllable to low heat) or even a hair dryer at low blow, all these can be used. You will need to practise the fusing on a test piece to ensure you are in control of the heat and that you are able to melt with disturbing the applied MPO colours. Soft gentle heat below 75c is the recommended process.
 
What type of substrates or surfaces can be worked onto?
Rigid board is a good choice to begin. MDF (medium density fibre board) is popular, or masonite (hardboard in Europe) and then all the other things that you can imagine where application with a palette knife of a paste formulation would be appropriate. Glass for instance. But a more rigid type rather than a highly flexible support is the better choice. This can be given a priming of paint before the MPO begins or left bare. Often a coating of mpo initially - fused in to ensure good initial grip to surface, this can be a good start.
 
Is MPO safe to use for anyone?

Yes, provided basic safety common to any activity where tools and mediums are used is accepted - some light ventilation is good and a stable surface is needed.

PSDS - Product Safety Data Sheet for MPO
 
Does MPO contain any toxic ingredients?
No. MPO is formulated with a set of ingredients that are all safe to use.
(The formulation is the 'know how' of the registered manufacturer and accepted as undisclosed.)
 
What can be used to colour the transparent cold wax MPO medium?

Oil Paint colour: Mix varying small amounts of Oil Paint colour with MPO. This will introduce oil into the formulation and so the touch dry time is extended by that oil.

Dry Pigment colour: Mix dry pigment into the MPO in varying small amounts. If the eventual compound if at all crumbly then add more MPO to ensure good bond of the coloured MPO to the support surface and other layers of previously applied MPO.

 
Must MPO be fused after every session?
NO. MPO is formulated to work as a cold paste or an encaustic medium. However, the final surface will achieve a much better sheen if carefully fused - just so that the wax surface is melted, but not using temperatures above 75C.
 
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Some methods of using MPO by Michael Bossom - Welsh UK encaustic artist
Some methods of using MPO by Michael Bossom - Welsh UK encaustic artist
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