I printed this image on Stone Henge which is quite thick paper. I could not do it one year ago because of the thickness of this paper. Unless you use some kind of press, you need to rely on your muscle and experience. Finally I challenged myself and somehow I could make it. I need more experience including the amount of ink I use and how much pressure I use. It took three hours to print 10 sheets. I might buy either an etching or a book press.
It is a time to start Christmas images for the winter shows. I am afraid that those might be cancelled again. But I need to do what I need to do. Besides it is quite fun to paint those colorful images. Also I am thinking about adding a dreamy quality to my paintings such as Victorian Christmas theme. When I was a student long time ago, I thought about some crazy ideas like “what is an art”. Now let’s have fun and clap the hands for what I see….attitude! I took my sketchbooks out and am drawing a Christmas tree and Santa Claus. It will be a great fall activity!
It is very hard to figure out if the overall dark and light patterns work or not by just looking at the wood block. Since I started the wood engravings a year and a half ago. It has been my biggest issue and struggles. Of course I can print the image and see the image on paper, but it is not fun process. When any artists use the oil based ink, we need to use the chemicals to clean the plate, block, roller, and etc. even it is just for checking up the image. So I try to avoid this extra step and go for the perfect result for me. I am still guessing the possible printed image when I chisel. But gradually this guessing business is getting easier.
This is the image I just finished and printed yesterday. I think that I started to understand the value patterns created with curved white lines on black block. When I draw, I can build up the layers with erasing smudging, and redrawing. Here when I chisel, all value patterns are determined by the visual mixture of black and white. Those grays created by visual mixture also indicate the different textures. I realized it is almost like solving a puzzle when I was working on this image.
I like to use Acrylic for my paintings. But for some paintings oil works much easier. Especially when I need to mix many colors the fast dry acrylic is hard to manipulate. This is one of those “let’s mix many colors” painting. I took my old oil paints and worked on yesterday afternoon. I thought this would be a nice image for the larger scale..so I created oil sketch as a study. Now I am not sure if this is good for the larger scale. I will sleep on it for a while.
I am thinking about starting a landscape painting today. One image is in my mind. Problem is I do not know where it is. I have a filing method which I changed many times….it means I do not know where it is! I am going to have a cup of tea and start looking for it.
Piccolo Spoleto show was fun and great. Now Virtual Central Pennsylvania Festival of the Art started. This show is totally virtual and will last until this Sunday. Since I do not have many paintings for this show, I am still painting. I just finished this image. I am going to finish another one sometime tomorrow. I started to feel like a painting machine.
There is a huge oak tree in John’s Island, SC. Some people say it is 600 years old. Other people say it is over 1000 years. It does not matter how old it is. When I go under this tree, I feel the magical power of timeless tree. It is just magnificent!
I found this bottle at one of the antique stores in Summerville. I haven’t had any red bottle so I was very excited when I saw this red one sitting on the shelf among other bottles. But soon I realized Red is very dominant color compared with other antique bottles’ colors. Before mixing with other bottles, I painted it without its friends. Next I will try with others.
As soon as summer starts, it becomes very hard to enjoy the outdoor living. But during the spring, South Carolina is the most heavenly place to be. You see all kind of flowers everywhere and birds are singing all day long. Nice breeze and soft sunlight cheer up my mind.
I think I finished this block. I like to add more markings, but if I do, the image will be very confusing. So I need to stop. Now I like to print this block and see if the image actually works or not. Unfortunately I used up all my paper for Spolet show and ordered paper I like on last Friday. Dick Brick said that I need to wait until tomorrow. OK…but I am ready to print!