These ducks are testing my bravery, and as a result I am procrastinating in the worst way. Or maybe I am just a great example of approach-avoidance behavior* in action. I want to finish this piece (good), but the next steps are awkward and scary (bad). I just keep walking up to the table and then away from it, afraid to take the plunge.
Step 11 wasn't so bad... it was a transparent gray applied over all the uncarved areas of the block. It unified everything as I had hoped, but it also made the female ducks a bit darker overall.
|Bufflehead reduction linocut in progress Step 11|
The color isn't bad... in fact I like it, but there isn't enough value contrast between the birds and the water. In particular, the head of the foreground bird is lost against the waves. I could (and probably will) darken areas of the water behind her head a bit more... but I don't think it will solve the problem.
Hm. More procrastination.
|Bufflehead linocut in progress: Step 12|
Yesterday I finally decided to add some lighter color back in to a few places on the female ducks' heads. I cut a stencil and did some very selective inking. The result is patchy-looking AND it's also not quite light enough. Argh. The patchiness is okay, it will be dealt with when I apply one more transparent gray layer over the entire bird, but I'm going to have to reprint a few of these lighter bits. Ugh. Fussy.
Unfortunately (or fortunately, says the procrastinator) I'm headed out of town for a few days again. I'm going to try to hit these light bits tonight before I go and then hopefully it will all be dry and ready for the final steps when I return. And maybe I'll have my courage back by then, too.
(*Wikipedia, that fountain of information that may or may not be correct, explains it this way: Approach-avoidance conflicts occur when there is one goal or event that has both positive and negative effects or characteristics that make the goal appealing and unappealing simultaneously.)