Tuesday, December 07, 2010

No Naked Walls - About Block Prints

Golden Notes 2
Hand painted block print on wood panel 24 x 36 in

After writing my blog yesterday I though that I should have mentioned how I go about making these block prints.  First of all I work out the design.  I have to decide what size I want the final work.  When I do this I have to allow for the size of the artwork plus the size of the surround or mount and then make it a size that will fit into a standard frame.  After making a lot of art that needed a custom sized frames I am finally getting smarter and working to standard sizes. Once the size is decided I then draw up the design I want.  Next I divide the design up into blocks that will fit the size.  For the Jester in the previous post the blocks are 6 inches square and the design is three blocks by 4 blocks or 18 inches by 24 inches. Next I cut all the small square blocks to make the printing plates and transfer the design to each one. Finally I lay them all out and paste them to one large sheet of mounting card to hold them in place while I print the design.  I use a roller to ink up the whole panel and then lay the paper over and hand press the ink onto the paper.  I could also run it through my printing press. Once it's dry I hand paint the central motifs that I want to feature. I have also experimented with printing onto a wood panel but I have to be very careful to place the design into exactly the right place on the panel because being a geometric design it would look awful if it was off even by a bit.  The attached picture is a piece I did on a wood panel.  It's similar to Golden Notes but much wider. Unfortunately the photo is a bit dark.

Monday, December 06, 2010

No Naked Walls - Perhaps it's because I'm a Gemini

Golden Geisha
Hand colored block print

The last few weeks were busy mainly because I was getting ready for my Open Studio.  Even though I didn't know many people here in Toronto after only recently moving here I thought that I would go ahead and make a start.  I have always found Open Studios good for me and I do like the people contact that they bring.  I actually didn't have a lot of visitors, which I guess was to be expected, however those who came, came to buy and quite a few pieces went to new homes with some wonderful people.   

Now that it's over I am back in the studio.  My plan was to work on some non representational pieces but somehow I got diverted.  Perhaps it's because I'm a Gemini  because I immediately started on a something the exact opposite of abstract or non representational, a very planned out piece of a Jester...!  One of the works that sold in the Open Studio was the work on the invite above, the hand colored block print "Golden Geisha".  I also did the musical block print "Golden Notes" a while back.
Golden Notes
Hand colored block print 26 in x 22 in
 Jester is a similar block print with Gold in it.  I like to show work with a theme and so I'm going to do a series of works limiting the colors to mainly black, grey, red and of course, gold.  Some of the pieces will be non representational, of that I'm determined, but it will enable me to do a variety of subject matter but still within a theme that will hang well together.  The Jester is nearly finished but I have to correct a few things.  It's been fun to do too.

In Jest
Hand colored block print 18 in x 24 in

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