Thursday, March 10, 2016

It's Finished! "Dinner Party" linocut

"Dinner Party," reduction linocut, 18" x 18"
embiggenable with a click

Holy cow, has this been a long one! Between technical difficulties and aesthetic challenges I had long weeks when I was ready to throw up my hands and go find a job that was less nerve-wracking. But it's finally done. The drying rack has been moved out of the way for the first time in two months (when I'm working on large pieces it has to occupy an inconvenient spot). Everything has been cleaned up and the studio is ready for the next project.

I'm definitely anxious to get started on something new, but have to go out of town again for a couple of days. (Reception at Ann Korologos Gallery in Basalt, see previous post.) I also have an illustration project that needs some attention and this print will need several days to dry, so... some time next week the lino chips will start to fly again.

But blah blah blah... I'm sure you want PICTURES, not babbling, so here's how it ended.

The step prior to this one didn't look much different... it darkened the males a bit, darkened a few areas of water, and added yellow to the crab. It gave me palpitations, though. I tried to use a newsprint mask because I didn't want to go through the effort of removing ALL of the water from the block. WRONG! The prints were too tacky. The mask pulled up color AND stuck to the print, so out came every bit of lino except for the birds.

Here's a look at the block inked up for the very last pass: a dark, almost black, transparent gray.

It's hard to see the details of the birds in the overall shot of the print... so here they are in close-up:

 My biggest complaint about the piece at this point is that once again I've done something with way too much blue, and it's a complete pain in the neck to try to get decent photos. (The birds are still wet and I'm fighting ink glare, too.) My next piece is going to have NO blue.

Well. Maybe a little. ;-)

Thanks for sticking by me through this piece, everyone. Your encouragement and interest stamina kept me going!


  1. Beautiful! I can feel the movement of the waves.

  2. The water reflections are masterful. The depth of field with the birds is fantastic! Beautiful. Never give up blue!

  3. No such thing as too much blue! Beautiful piece, as always.

  4. blue suits your work tho :D

    and thanks for the close up, great to see all the detail :D

  5. The color blue appreciates your support! I do love using blue, I just hate trying to photograph it. There's a reason that, in the olden days of paste-up, there was a color called "non-repro blue." The camera wouldn't see it, so non-repro blue pencils were used to layout mark grids and make notes for the platemaker and all that. Digital cameras seem to be even more touchy about blue.

    My big smile for the day: My studio is my living room, so whenever I come in the door I am immediately confronted by whatever I'm working on. For the first time since January I came in from a walk and did NOT have to think about this print! :-)

    1. Is that why you see some parts of pen and ink illustrations for reproduction from the 40's and 50's have areas shaded in blue. I always though it was to indicate to the printer that a different colour was to be used in these areas. Thanks for your informative and interesting blogs

    2. It could be, John. Even when I was doing paste-up in the 1980s we often cut color separations from ruby or amber film (which the camera viewed as black).. the light blue could have indicated where to cut film.