Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Wet Canvas Exchange - Printmakers Gone Wild

I've known about this exchange for months. For months, I've been busy at work, and hoping that I'll get some time (and energy) free for this. Then I got my dizzy spells back again last month and that put a stop to anything remotely creative. Finally, finally, I was able to sit down and consider some options. I started with one image, and while I liked the idea, the execution was far to abstract to be even remotely recognizable. I don't mind abstract, but I wanted it to be a bit more obvious. Next idea was lovely, started work on that, then realized I just did not have time for a four colour reduction in a minimum of 20 edition. So, now what?

Flipping through my photos, I came across one that I thought might work. And it did, rather nicely, I feel.

Oyama - burnishings on FlickrOyama
Technique: relief print
MDF carved with Dremel
Media: Daniel Smith w/s relief ink
(carbazole violet, phthalo blue, burnt umber, carbon black, permanent red)
Dimensions: approximately 9"x6"
Edition: 28
Year: 2009

The problem with a blend or rainbow roll is that it works so much better when your roller/brayer is the same dimension as the print. Mine, even my beautiful new one from Takach, is not. So the colours were applied:

1. Darkest blue with a little brayer
2. Darkest blue to lighter blue with the Takach
3. Lighter blue to pinkish with another smaller brayer

Most of the edition are remarkably good; a few have a couple of solid horizontals that I'm not 100% pleased with. There's also a bit of a porous spot in the MDF which sometimes came through a little bit lighter than I'd prefer, but it actually didn't detract from the image, and added to the blend remarkably well, I thought.

Next time, I'll try sealing the MDF first with something like primer, to see how that goes. That's what people have been telling me, and everyone seems so astonished that I don't seal the MDF first. Generally, it's not been a problem, but once in a while...

Anyway, off to the post office to ship this off!! Hopefully it'll get there in good enough time to not be too horribly late!

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Catching Up

Wow. It's almost been two months of silence from this quarter. Mostly, that's been two months of no art, which is why nothing's been posted here. A couple of exceptions:

Oceans of Art

We attended the opening of this wonderful exhibition of the Bamfield artists' work in Nanaimo in June. Prior to the opening, a number of the artists & guests met for dinner at le Cafe Fran├žais for wonderful, simple French cuisine. We trooped across the street to the beautifully renovated Nanaimo Art Gallery, which used to be a bank, and admired the donations of the participating artists. As far as I know, five pieces sold from the show, the rest were shipped back to Bamfield and are still available for purchase through the Public Education Program.

Here's me at the opening, in front of "Exposed", one of my donations (also donated a couple from the "Flow" series"):


Gallery in the Garden

While not strictly an overwhelming success on the day itself (the weather turned from 30C the day before to about 12C in the powerful, probably almost gale-force winds the day of), I was happy to be invited to participate in the Delta Arts Council's Gallery in the Garden again this year. I sold a piece, and I was also invited to provide some works on consignment to the Upstart Crow, a delightfully eclectic gift shop in the village of Ladner. I might even be teaching some workshops through their facilities this fall; I'll keep you posted!

Katka, one of my printmaking buddies I've met through Wet Canvas! was kind enough to keep me company and brave the less than pleasant weather for a couple of hours. She provided me with a couple of photos of my setup and of me demonstrating printmaking to passers-by. You can read more about the day on her blog, The Blue Chisel.


Yes, I was freezing; unbelievably, I thought to bring a windbreaker, but didn't think about having anything warmer for my legs. I ended up, at the tail of the day, wrapping, sarong like, around my legs, one of the towels that I use to transport framed work. The wind didn't manage to take my tent, but I held on a couple of times just in case. It did take some other artists' tents and certainly blew down many displays, and damaged a few. Thank you, Dave, for your brilliant display stands (which he built for this event last year).

And what else, non-artful (or less artful) tasks, have I been doing in the interim, you might ask?

Well, as always, keeping Printsy (more or less) up to date with the (more or less) weekly "Who's Printsy" feature and the Printsy artist interviews. If you've not yet discovered the Printsy blog, definitely check it out - there are some incredibly talented printmaking artists selling their work through Etsy. If you're one of them, and are not yet a part of Prinsty, please convo me so that I can add your shop to the list.

And it's certainly that time of year again: the food production garden has been in full swing, and is just now starting somewhat to slack off a bit as the cooler weather crops come out and the hot weather crops are not yet ramped up to full production. I haven't posted any new canning recipes yet (although will, at some point, share all of my cherry preserve recipes that I tried this year), but you can always check out what recipes I've concocted or come across, as well as other stuff we're up to here, at my other blog, Roman Life.