Alrighty, then! Back to work. My technique still feels a bit wobbly after entirely too much time away from the print bench, but just like a long walk after too much sitting every step feels stronger.
I am scheduled to give a demonstration during the "Artists in Action" portion of the Birds in Art opening weekend at the Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum, so I decided I'd tackle a "simple" bird. One that I could have mostly finished before the event so my demonstration would reveal the dramatic finish.
In theory I did choose a "simple" bird... it's a gull, for heaven's sake. White and gray and black with a yellow bill. But if you've been reading Brush and Baren for any length of time, you know that I have a gift for turning simple into complicated. It's one of my best skills, actually.
Here's how it's gone so far:
The first two colors were done with a mask. Just the bill and a ring around the eye. Easy peasey.
And then a light gray.
So far, so good. But of course I knew I needed a second gray. Interestingly enough (to me, anyway), I didn't mix a new gray. The first one had a LOT of transparent medium... in fact the ink was mixed with no white at all, just black and transparent medium. So a second transparent layer over the first made a nice, subtle change.
And then a third gray. This time I added a touch more black to the already-mixed ink, just to step up the contrast with the lower layers.
Never one to leave well enough alone, I decided on one more color before the obligatory waiting-for-ink-to-dry stage. A very transparent blue.
Clearly this is already more complicated than I wanted for my demonstration piece, but that's okay because I realized at this stage that it CAN'T be my demonstration piece.
I've been printing using my large registration jig– not the small, portable one. I have to finish printing on the same jig I started with or the registration won't work! (sigh) Oh, well. Guess that means I'll have to start another print this weekend. Darn.*
(*That was sarcasm.)