Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Printing Spatter

Proofing my cherry wood spatter block. Changes in plans meant that I had to throw all of my blocks, tools, cut paper and barens/and brushes into a suitcase as I had to change continents all of a sudden. I'd hoped to wrap up this "simple" print before leaving but I had to leave a week early and the week I'd left for printing didn't happen. Sadly, my suitcase was way overweight (art supplies, Halloween candy and tortillas) so I had to jettison the oak block that started this whole thing...so I'll have to make due with some careful printing to get some of the depth and drama I was after. Work commitments will keep me in Santa Cruz, until December but for a few weeks, I'm back in Italy and trying to finish up an art project that is due Nov. 1. This will be a portion of one of the blocks that will make up an exchange print for Baren Forum's exchange # 54. It's a friendly exchange of works by relief printmakers that happens 4 times a year. Sometimes there's a theme/sometimes a size/sometimes a "technique challenge". No theme this time; the only restrictions are the size: (5.7" x 13") and a technique...moku hanga--all the participants this time around have to use the Japanese woodblock printing method (wood blocks, Japanese paper, brushed-on water-based inks and printing with a baren (or wooden spoon). Not sure I'll make the deadline as if I have to ship the prints from here they'll take longer but I'm back on track after the jet lag wore off and my cold is finally waning. This block printed just fine, the graininess is from the fact that it's on etching paper and not my good Japanese paper. I'm proofing the other blocks today. I'll be printing on a new paper, Kizuki Kozo from the Japanese Paper Place in Ontario, Canada. A bit risky trying a new paper on a moku-hanga print, but I like surprises; it might be too soft, too lightly-sized, too light, too anything...If I'm lucky, I should be able to adjust the final print to all of these variables.... I hope to start printing tomorrow if no new hurdles present themselves.

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