Friday, March 22, 2013

"Red Chair"

"Red Chair"
Sintra engraving on paper, acrylic paint
8.5" x 8.5" (unconstructed)

My new little papercraft print, "Red Chair," is on view right now in Milwaukee as part of PRNT:MK, the 2013 SGCI printmaking conference.  I'm not attending, sadly, because attending as someone not attached to a university in some way is crazy expensive.  So, I've been attending about every other year.  The picture at left was taken by Colin Roe Ledbetter of the portfolio my piece is included in, Assorted Delights.

This piece is also in the upcoming show Cloud 9, at the Trunk Space in Phoenix, AZ with a reception on April 5th.

The piece has an inner chamber, and if you peer through the windows in his torso you can see it, too. Though it's difficult to photograph, I've attempted it to give you some idea.

For the portfolio this piece was made for I needed to construct about 20 individual figures, each one taking a little over an hour to make.  By the time I'd finished cutting and gluing the last one I sort of hated them.  It's been a couple weeks now, so I no longer hold such loathing for the needless complexity I engineered into his construction.

 At left, you can see "Red Chair" inconstructed.
And here's Mulcifer the cat, diligently overseeing me as I print.

Wednesday, January 09, 2013

Three headed cat

I wanted to give all my friends a present for New Year's Day.  Originally, I though a family portrait (me, my partner, our cat) would be perfect, but the partner didn't want to be in it, and I thought it would send the wrong message if it was just me and the cat.  So it became just the cat, Mulcifer, which I think was the best to begin with anyway.

Two color relief print (a sintracut) with screenprint for the calendar bit.  Printed with Gamblin's Portland black on Rives BFK.
My inking glass slab is salvaged glass from discarded scanners.  The glass is thick and holds up well, plus it's for free.

I'm thinking about listing a couple of the leftover calendar's on my etsy.  Anyone interested?

Edited to add: If you want one, you can find it here.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Bat: The first print

Today, I printed the first print on my new Takach press.  Well, to be honest it's on indefinite loan not really mine, but it's as good in that I get to use it.  It's a table top Takach, but will accommodate up to a 30" x 22" paper, and anything much bigger than that I can print at work.

The move was not quite as epic and demanding as I had expected given that the press is mostly aluminum, so it was doable for only two or three people to move it, though very heavy. My boss helped us move it out of Josephine Press, and then my partner (Jason), my friend Tim Musso and I moved it up into my loft.  Luckily, we have a freight elevator in our building.


Our cat, Mulcifer, immediately inspected the new addition to his domain and found it satisfactory.

The first print, a wee little linocut of a bat, is something I could also have printed on my other press, a wee tank of a thing that has served me well in the past, but I really wanted to get started on the Takach and not put it off until I had something really impressive to print.

The bat is printed on Arches 250 cover with rubber based ink, and paper size is 5" by 7", and I watched Poirot on Mystery! the whole time.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Many little skulls

My boss sort of volunteered me to donate some artwork to yet another charity show.  I think people are beginning to believe that I am far more charitable than I actually am.
Anyhow, the theme of this show is seasonal, Halloween, and they specifically requested that we price our items low.  At the printshop where I work, we recently printed an edition of intaglio prints for the artist Aron Wiesenfeld and had stacks of narrow strips of Arches paper.  So, inbetween being a helpful instructor during my monoprint class, I made little tiny skull monoprints.  I started with reductive style monoprint inking:  I inked the plate with a solid layer of black, and created the image by selectively removing ink.  After printing the first skulls, I reworked the "ghost," the residue of ink left on the plate.

The charity show opens this Friday, October 26th at Pop Gallery.

I made these two little prints on the same day as part of the demo.  The witch is by request from one of the students.

Monday, October 08, 2012

"Donkey" Collagraph Print

22" x30"
Carborundum Grit Aquatint Collagraph on Rives BFK

I finished this collagraph last week, just three days before its intended unveiling.  It was made for an auction, raising funds for the Obama campaign.  I had an impassioned speech that I gave at the request of the hosts, but I will spare you it, readers.

This collagraph is a carborundum grit aquatint: this style of collagraph involves painting with sand and glue, using a drawing as guide, onto a plate and then rubbing ink into the surface.  The sand holds the ink and the glue is slick so it won't adhere.  The plate is then run through a press transferring the ink from plate to paper.

Here's a picture of the plate while being made, with help from my cat Mulcifer.  You can see the drawing that I used as the guide while I painted on the glue and carborundum.  While I work, I have three separate bowls of glue and sand:  one just glue, one with small amount of carborundum, and one with heavy carborundum.  I also use a separate paint brush for each mixture. 

Here's the actress Jennifer Lewis auctioning off my piece.  She was hilarious and amazing for all 2 hours of the auction.

And a few more making of photos, this time without a cat.  I printed an edition of 5 with one artist's proof at Josephine Press.  To get a really good print, I should have done primarily handwipe on the plate, but wiping the carborundum is like wiping sandpaper so I used tarlatan followed by tons of paper wiping.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

More monoprints from the monoprint class

These guys were described as "thumb people" by my students when I made them last.  I was demonstrating basic monoprint process to some artists new to the medium, and then spent my downtown reworking and printing the ghost (the residue of ink left on the plate from the previous print) and printing on scraps of paper.  The shop I work in has been around for a few decades now, so the scraps of paper have built up considerably.

I have a million of these little demo prints from the monoprint class I teach every other Saturday and now I'm starting training to take over the etching class as well.  I have no idea what to do with them all. Suggestions?

Wednesday, September 05, 2012

Monoprint Workshop

I run a monoprint printing session at Josephine Press, and last weekend I had a  couple of new people, so I got to do some mini demos of the basic techniques.  To the left, the first image is demonstration reductive inking for the figure, additive inking for the blue background, and stencils for the halo.  Next to it is the ghost print.  A ghost print is a print when only the residue left on the plate is printed. It always takes artists used to working painting on canvas and panel awhile to get accustomed to painting on plexiglass for monoprint, but at this point in my career, I'm far more adept at using the plexiglass.

I'm trying to get people to work more with multiple plate printing, so the second print I demonstrated I made sure to use two plate.  The green background and the figures body were printed first, followed by the hands and face for the second print.

Last picture are the stencils I cut.