Encaustic Flag Photograph. Encaustic is a technique that uses beeswax and damar resin as a medium to create paintings or mixed media photography. The “caustic” part of the term indicates that heat is used to melt and blend the layers of wax into a unified piece. In ancient Greece, ship hulls were waterproofed with beeswax and tinted with brightly colored pigments. Hundreds of encaustic paintings exist in the form of the Fayum funerary portraits painted on wooden masks that adorned the deceased, leaving their realistic portrayal in pigmented wax. These nature-based materials from B.C. times are surprisingly consistent with those found in an encaustic workroom today. This encaustic piece by Joy Matthews is 7 ½” X 8”.