These are the two pieces that I am entering in the 2014 "Prints of the Year" exhibit, curated by Parker Potter, at the Robert Lincoln Levy Gallery in Portsmouth NH. The show runs from January 2--January 31.
Both prints are reduction block prints made from soft-cut blocks, hand-printed using Akua inks.
The sunflower print has 6 layers and the birch trees print has 4 but is printed on black paper.
Here are the beginning stages of the sunflower print. Fortunately I was able to take pictures of gorgeous sunflowers on my walks around town last summer.
The birches print was made last spring for a "print exchange" that I participated in through "The Sketchbook Project".
The Opening Reception is on Friday January 3 from 5--8 pm. If the weather cooperates, I'll be there!
I'm a little behind schedule with this week's IF post! This was last week's theme, but it was an incredibly busy week at work due to deadlines for the Scholastic Art Awards Program, overall pre-Christmas craziness (thankfully high school students are not quite as excited as elementary school kids), the college daughter home for winter break with all her stuff, and cruddy weather that made for some hazardous driving and nasty commuting.
I'm so happy to be on Holiday break until the second of January. After a really lovely Christmas Sunday service, and some Christmas brunch grocery shopping, I plunked down on the couch, and read the Sunday papers from cover to cover. What a treat!
This week's IF theme, "pattern" inspired me to do a somewhat accurate rendering of my Grant family tartan design. We're expecting a snowstorm here Saturday night, so hoping for a White Christmas this year!
Last night I joined up with a group of local art teachers for a fun evening of "sip and paint". The concept of everyone painting the same picture is sort of against the philosophy of what we encourage in our classes, but we had a great time interpreting the theme in our own styles.
(I'm the one in the back row, third from the left)
There have been a lot of cold and windy days recently. Today is milder but the heavy rains have been coming down since last night. Fortunately, Turkey Day is expected to be bright and sunny tomorrow with temperatures in the 30's F.
It's nice to have my girls home for a bit, while we celebrate Thanksgiving with the extended families!
Best Wishes for a happy day!
I wasn't one of those little girls who drew horses all the time, so I'm hoping my rendering of a horse's behind is somewhat accurate.
Raw and rainy here today. Kind of drab now that the autumn leaves have browned up and fallen off many of the trees. I'm looking forward to a field trip this week to the MFA, and having a tour of the John Singer Sergeant watercolor exhibit. It is supposed to be sunny but cold in the 30's.
I've been working on a sunflower print for a while, and am finally getting closer to the end. I'll post some images of the process in my next post.
Just a little graphite pencil illustration this week. I started sketching in my sketchbook, and liked it enough to finish it up there.
Very sad to see the sun go down so early after changing the clocks for Daylight Savings time. It's 4:45 pm right now, and quite dark---makes it a bit harder to change into exercise clothes and head for the YMCA for 6 o'clock class!
I spent a recent Saturday at a Monotype workshop, learning how to make Gelatin prints. Yes, regular old Knox Gelatin can be used to make monoprints without a printing press. Below is the gelatin plate ready to be inked up. (we used Akua Color inks and a brayer)
Our paper was attached to the plexiglass surface under the plate, so that it was easy to register the multiple layers of of the print (there is a "ghost" print on the left, and the first print on the right).
A grouping of leaves were placed on the inked gelatin plate to create the design you can see on the right.
Other materials included stencils, feathers, bubble wrap, lace, etc.
(anything flat and textured worked well)
A variety of prints made with multiple layers!
The possibilities are endless, and the process is suitable for all ages!
It's Thursday already and I'm finally finding the time and energy to post this week's illustration.
A week that included "Open House"at my high school, a college kid's visit home, and beautiful fall afternoons that enticed me to walk extra miles, has left me a bit lethargic in the blogging department.
I'm looking forward to printmaking class tomorrow night and a NH Art Educators' conference on Saturday. Keeping busy, and glad most of it is fun stuff!
Rain in the morning, but the sun came out for a bit in the afternoon so I was able to take a walk with my long-time walking buddy. We got caught in a shower half way through but the temperature was mild today and it felt a bit refreshing.
The Fall foliage is close to peak color here, but the wind and rain sent many of the leaves off the trees today, and the sidewalks and streets were covered with a carpet of reds, and oranges, and yellows.
I enlarged a photo I had taken with my iPhone, and found it contained a little bee flying toward the sunflower I had taken the picture of. After looking up the definition of this week's word, I used the bee as my inspiration. Buzzzzz
It's a little early for carving pumpkins, but I liked the idea for this week's IF theme.
The weather is feeling very Fall-ish today as the cooler temperatures have been around all weekend. I've been busy both days, visiting one daughter in her new apartment in Beantown, and the other one at her college. Fun to hang out with the girls a bit, as there's only so much texting you can do to keep in touch.
We've had some beautiful weather here for the past couple weeks. In the last ten days, I ended up visiting a friend and hanging out at her pool, spending time at the ocean visiting family, celebrating my 30th wedding anniversary with a drive up to Maine, as well as a day at one of my favorite lakes.
I guess I've been trying to squeeze it all in before my summer vacation comes to an end. It's time to exchange my summer brain for my back-to-work brain! There's only one more week before the students arrive for their first day, so I'll be back in the building for a few days this week getting ready for the new school year.
Here's a photo of the Portland Head Light that I took last week on the coast of Maine.
I just finished a new block print inspired by my trip to California last month. I'm excited to be mailing off prints this week to my friends who traveled with me. I'll post the process of making a multi-colored reduction block print so anyone stopping by can understand the various steps of this technique.
Here's the "easy-cut" block with the drawing on it. I usually outline everything with a black Sharpee marker first, so all the details stand out.
I also use a template to mark each layer so they will match up when I print the subsequent colors.
Here is the first color, printed by hand, on Rives Light paper using Akua inks.
Layer 2 is a blend of two colors that make up the sky and some of the brown background. You can see the areas that are cut away so the first color shows through.
Layer 3--- green and gray
Layer 4---more green
Final Layer--the inked plate
The finished design---"Vineyard View"
Maybe I should open up that bottle of wine I brought back from California, to celebrate!
My favorite blueberries were the wild ones we used to pick when I was a child. We did a lot of camping and hiking back then, and we'd find blueberry bushes along the trails. From one campground, we would paddle out to "Blueberry Island" and pick berries right from the canoe. Then my dad would make pancakes for us, speckled with those tiny, sweet berries.
I'm working on this image for Illustration Friday this week. The theme is 'jungle" so I thought I'd incorporate Rousseau's painting "The Dream" into my drawing. I'm going to add color next but I wanted to get posted before Friday rolled around again.
While I was away from home, and not posting on my blog, I was traveling around parts of California with eight of my college friends. We've known each other at least 35 years, and we began holding summer reunions four years ago. Thanks to Facebook, we resumed our friendships. Now that the youngest of our children are 18 years old, we planned a big trip to California, to meet up with the two who have settled there. Two of us still live in New England, the others are in Maryland, Virginia, and Connecticut. The landscapes and the temperatures in the areas we visited are quite varied, and I'll share some of the pictures from my trip.
Brunch in Santa Barbara
The Art Fair along the beach in Santa Barbara
Pacific Coast Highway
Stopped for pie at Linn's in Cambria
San Francisco Trolley Cars
They say this is the pub where the first Irish Coffee originated. Good place to warm up as it was very cool and windy in the city
The Golden Gate Bridge
The "Painted Ladies" (fans of the Full House television show will recognize these)
The view of San Francisco from Sausalito
Muir Woods National Park featuring the giant Redwood trees
Wine casks in Castello di Amorosa (nice and cool down there as it was a warm day outside)
Lake Tahoe beach
Heading down in the tram at Squaw Mountain
View from the tram of windswept rock
Emerald Bay in South Tahoe
Now that I'm home again, I need to get back to creating some new artworks. I think my California vacation will be the inspiration for my next block print. Choosing from so many great images will be the biggest difficulty.
I am an art teacher who loves to draw and paint, as well as illustrate for children. I also enjoy printmaking---especially block prints. Whatever I do as an artist, I have to remind myself---no pressure---it all starts by just putting pencil to paper.