Monday, April 14, 2014

Enamel metaphor

I finished, and mailed off, the small 5" x 7" print to the 2014 sketchbook project's "Print Exchange 2014". This year's theme was "waiting for a sign" and I took it fairly literally.

"enamel metaphor", 5" x 7" moku hanga print;
This was printed from 5 blocks and has 8 separate color impressions.
Edition of 12 in this color scheme with 3 artist proofs.

I tend to "collect" road signs. I often stop and photograph old ones as well as ones that just strike me as odd or amusing. I also find them full of metaphoric content. "STOP" and "YIELD" are particularly strong--I guess I'm not used to the Imperative tense........Others are mere suggestions; recommendations on actions to follow....
I appreciated the friendly hint here to avoid this marble monument by going Right......

So my little print is both quite concrete: "Keep Left, Avoid Wall" but I also intended a more subtle, deeper meaning but it's one that you'll have to ponder on your own as I think it will mean different things to different viewers.
I've a few more road-sign/driving-themed prints in the "still-in-the-sketchbook phase" but there are a couple that I hope to do soon.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Paper Storage

I'm finally the proud owner of a new (but used) flat file. All it took was patience, an internet connection, and a car big enough to haul the thing home.....

This has been typical of my paper storage system up to now. I've kept my rolls of good paper in Large diameter PVC pipes up in the rafters of my small Santa Cruz art shed but when I came to Italy the paper I brought with me ended up in Cardboard tubes or boxes. I've gotten the really good paper out of the cardboard--it's too acidic and will damage the paper if it lives there too long so most of the rolls have been placed in an outer sheet of cotton rag/artist paper.

The obvious problem is it's hard to keep track of what I have and where it is and as I need to cut sheets down to size for printing--the heavier papers don't like being unrolled and have to be weighted down.

So, I've been looking for a used flat file for ages.  In Italy, new, they're frightfully expensive but I couldn't rationalize or justify spending that much for my little "hobby" I've been regularly trawling and Kijiji ( a kind of Italian craigslist) hoping to find a used one.

And this week not one but TWO showed up on Ebay; One was in nearby Lucca (1 hr away). I put in a low bid but I had no competition and finally and for a little more than $150 I now have a big, steel, flat file. I did have to take the back seats out of my car; drive there and back, load the thing into the car and then haul it back and put it together again....but it took just a few hours...

I didn't think to ask the dimensions so I was a bit chagrined to learn it is one of the big ones....
140cm long, 95 cm deep and 55 cm tall.....that's 55"x 37".....more than big enough!

I still have to go through my tubes and label the drawers, and get the paper stored away.

I feel more organized already.