Wednesday, September 30, 2009

The Road Into Town

I don't know how many times over the past eight years that I've lived in my house I've pulled to the end of my street in the morning, stopped to turn right, and then wished I had a camera with me to take a picture of the view heading into downtown Bellbrook. I live at the top of a hill and downtown, with its one intersection, is at the bottom. It's different every morning, depending on the season and the time and the atmosphere. This morning was one of those mornings, but when I got home I pulled out my sketchbook and drew the view.

Suddenly, I have my next reduction print. It was not what I was planning, as I had already drawn out a beach on a piece of linoleum and cut out my paper. But I am feeling this one. The two lightest places, in the sky and in the road. The hills in the distance. The shadow on the road.

So I've decided that this will be the print I blog about start to finish. I've been meaning to do it for a while, but i get so caught up in the process that I don't want to stop to scan things in, or write about them. And I need to come up with a little postcard size visual documentary of what goes into these prints to help people understand as I try and sell them. Step No. 1 is the idea, and here it is.

Step No. 2 is already complete, as tonight I prepared my block. I'll be printing from a piece of birch faced plywood leftover from some panels I made for my built-in fridge. I like this stuff. It is relatively easy to carve and not too grainy, and it doesn't seem to get saturated with ink like my previous wood carving attempts with leftover pine stair treads.

I am definitely getting quicker and more efficient with this first step. Because I already had the 18 sheets of various papers ready to go for the other print I had in mind, I went with the same 7" x 11" size allowing for an inch of border surrounding the print. This is the registration system I've been using lately. I carve a right angle about an inch outside the image area to align the paper on the left and bottom edges.

It is getting to be a little late to move on to the next step tonight, which is likely the reason I am writing about it rather than doing it. I'll be drawing the sketch onto the block and then printing out the lightest ares, the sky and and road. I'm thinking it will take 2-3 impressions to get the gradient going, but that's one of those things that is subject to change once I actually start printing.

I have to add, especially after that previous post about reprinting, that starting something new holds a lot of promise. Who knows. This may be the One. The elusive print with which I am satisfied and happy with upon its completion.


Nighthawk said...

I love it that you are explaining this process as you go along.......

starkeyart said...

trying to explain, anyway