Tristina Dietz Elmes grew up in Asia in the 1960's and 70's where she soaked up the oriental culture, developed an appreciation for the arts (ancient art was all around her!) and formed an innate sense of balance and color.

While living in Korea, Tristina found fascination with ink and rice paper paintings. In Taiwan she studied Chinese language, character painting and flower arranging. The daughter of a linguist, her first language was Chinese!

She became a jewelry maker in 2001 at the urging of her father, Don Dietz, an author and Lapidary / Metalsmith instructor at the Boca Raton Museum of Art School, and soon after discovered polymer clay as a way to create exotic beads for her work. She co-founded the South East Florida Polymer Clay Guild in 2004 and has taught polymer clay workshops at the Boca Raton Museum of Art school.

Experiments with coloring white polymer clay in the creation of her Light Hearts (tm) jewelry led Tristina to extend the same serendipitous blending techniques to her other artwork. Additional sources of inspiration from Boca Raton Museum of Art school teacher Edyi Lampasona's tissue painting techniques, Micky Lawler's fabric painting book "SkyDyes", and Mary Beth Shaw's book "Flavor For Mixed Media" have contributed to the birth of Tristina's PaperScapes (tm), Fantasy Landscapes and energetically inspired Abstract paintings. Her acrylic, watercolor, and mixed media artworks embody a dynamic movement of color in predominantly abstract forms.

In 2009 Tristina was introduced to today's revival of Encaustic Hot Wax paint both as a coating and preservative for some of her works on paper, as well as a colorful painting medium all on it's own, through her voracious consumption of art magazines and books. The depth created with the encaustic paints and heavenly smell of warm beeswax enchanted her as it did the ancients whose wax and pigment paintings have lasted over 2000 years. 

Her encaustic works include monotype prints (with landscape and ethereal moods), painted and waxed exotic papers, and encaustic collage paintings on wood panel, some of which exhibit a distressed look (incorporating charcoal, graphite and asphalt as grunge elements).  Tristina received her Advanced Encaustic Wax Instructor Certification from R&F Handmade Paints in 2013 and teaches encaustic wax painting in her Florida studio.

Having discovered Pebeo Paints’ unique liquid alkyd oil paints and liquid art panels early in 2014, Tristina worked with the company to become their first "Pebeo Mixed Media Product Specialist". Since then, she has embarked on a journey around the World delighting workshop and demonstration attendees while sharing the self-manipulative and WOW results of combining the high quality Mixed Media paints by Pebeo. 

A professed art-book-aholic, Tristina's library of over 300 art books comprises a well read treasury of techniques and ideas that she fuses together to keep her colorful artwork moving forward in new ways... Read her artful blog on this website HERE and older articles at

Tristina is currently continuing to teach, paint and test new art materials. You can find her YouTube videos HERE.

As she likes to say, "So much to discover and little time!"