Thursday, August 7, 2008

Year of the Rat

Last year we mailed out Year of the Boar greeting cards to all our family and friends. We celebrated the Asian zodiac/calendar for 2 reasons. First, celebrated in early February it allowed me to procrastinate further before sending them out and 2nd, I had recently started learning Moku Hanga--the technique of Japanese, water-based woodcuts and this was an excuse to practise on another print.
So, I went to the internet to look at wild boar pictures (cinghiale in Italian) and spent a good week with thumbnail sketches, layout, multiple designs before setting on a design I liked. Once they were carved, printed, glued onto heavier card stock for mailing I got the family together to sign them before they got mailed out.
Sami, then 7, wasn't really interested in signing someone else's card and asked if he could make his own. He sat down, looked at mine and proceeded in about 5 minutes to dash something off. We scanned it into the computer and colored it in.
As we stuffed envelopes. He looked frustrated and started to cry. When I asked what was the matter he said that he can't do anything right and wished he could draw as well as his father. I started to laugh which made him even madder until I explained that I wished more than anything that I drew as well as he did now at age 45 as he did at 7. He didn't believe me but I promised that he would be able to design next year's card, this years Year of the Rat.
So Sami designed our 2008 family greeting card and my job was just to faithfully carve and print his drawing.
Both prints were in loose editions of about 60 and were sent via the Italian postal service to family and friends.
We still draw together. Each of us looking over the other's shoulder and trying to make our drawings look like the others.

1 comment:

  1. Love both boars! I am a lurker from Baren Forum who also took April's class (I live in SC full time). Your Italian life looks idyllic, but I'm sure you work really hard. My blog is , my prints are sprinkled throughout. It's wonderful you and your son draw together.