I took a woodcut class over the weekend at A6, a local printmaking gallery. This is the fruit of my labor on Saturday, my sketch on graph paper, my carved block and my first print.
This is Julie Winter, our instructor, no relation to Joe Winter the potter. We used this press to emboss our images. The student woodcut is there in the gig and Julie is getting ready to add printing paper.
We hung our prints on this magnet board as we finished them. It's a green studio so everything has to be environmentally sensitive. My experience years ago was with oil-based inks which were beyond messy and difficult to clean up. I found these soy-based oils to be a dream by contrast.
The other four students in the class have prior experience and art degrees. I felt like a poser when Lisa sitting on my right whipped this out from a sketch she spontaneously did of the display area of the studio.
This is mine in contrast.
MaryJane on my left really fought with her print so these three were the only ones completed and printed on Saturday.
Jim, a graphic artist, took his home to complete and printed it on Sunday. The idea was to complete and print our first block on Saturday and then to carve two complementary blocks and print them on Sunday.
These were the steps that Sue's prints took. The images are bottom to top. (Sorry - my laptop has lost it's cursor so I'm managing with touch screen which I've never done before.) She carved a block for red and a block for green but when she printed them together they became brown. We weavers know what it feels like to accidentally cross complementary colors. Brown!
This was my second block when I stopped to eat lunch on Sunday. I'm so glad I took a pad of graph paper or I would have been lost. I decided since I'd done diagonals on my first block that I'd do circular shapes on my second one. I outlined the circles with my water bottle. I think that's where the pattern started - I reached for a drink of water.
This is the results of my three blocks. The top print is my first one and then because Julie stayed an extra hour after class, I ran my prints again but reversed the original black block which is the bottom image. It really changes things. I held up my graph paper to the light as I was planning my two blocks and my plan held up. I'm glad I stayed the extra hour even though I was beat because it was a good lesson on orientation, something Julie brought up earlier in our class.
I only own one brayer so was thoroughly entertained by this collection drying by the sink. I think I'm hooked. I'm lucky to have a print-making friend in Reno who is fielding my questions. I've ordered a catalog from McClains, a printmaking supplier right here in Portland.
I'm not replacing weaving but I am supplementing it as a hobby. I'm no longer able to weave for hours on end - bummer! Weaving does pay its own way which is a big plus in a hobby, that and the love of it. I can't explore printmaking any further until after this weekend though. It's our guild's first annual holiday sale - someone needs to tag and price all my stuff.