May 9, 2010

death is a meal.

Yay! I finished a print and it is now the first to be for sale in my shop -! Cool.

Printing this was real fun, and real good practice too. It started with a little type doodle in my art journal, later I found that certain images kept swimming around with those words in my head - so a print it became! I love working over a sketch then transferring it to a block for carving. And oh, how I love to carve! I find it so satisfying - it tests my patience, control, and attention to detail while also being completely self indulgent (knives! cutting!). Win - win!

The next step has been what I struggle with most so far, on and off the press. I've had this really filthy misconception about printing. I assumed that all my hard work would be done in the sketching/carving/typesetting/etc phases, so that when I was finally ready to print I'd just be able to bang 'em right out 1! 2! 3! I could not have been wronger. There is as much work in printing each image as there is in each of the previous steps. Every single image needs particular attention paid.

So here I am bubble burst + lesson learned, and all the better for it. I didn't use the press for these prints, instead I pulled each by hand so that I might pay very close attention. I used the water-soluble oil inks again (love!) cut with a little crisco. I know many people in high places are probably frowning upon this, but it just works so well! The ink + crisco has great body and stays perfectly open while I'm printing. For burnishing I used a Japanese baren and bone folder combo - the baren first for a broad even impression, next the bone folder to sharpen up the details. Next time I will have some photos of a print being pulled, or maybe even a video - that would be fun!

I am really happy with these prints, the finished product as well as the process. I can't wait to do more! To get a little back story on the text, and see more images of the print check out the listing on Etsy. I'm off to call mi madre. Happy Mother's Day all!

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