Thursday, May 9, 2019

Linocut in Progress: Almost There, or Not

Oh! Finally I am in the studio without the huge distractions of out of town meetings or show installations or framing or deadlines. Well. Sort of. I have a HUGE deadline looming that involves all of those things: my solo exhibition at the Museum of American Bird Art in Massachusetts. But I do have (MUST have) a couple of weeks in which I am able to focus.

The morning after I returned from Chicago I marched straight downstairs into the studio, still in my pajamas, to take care of the small detail of the spot-inked red in the wing of the blackbird in the current linocut in progress.

Reduction linocut in progress, Step 9

This was surprisingly difficult, although it shouldn't have surprised me since I always struggle with reds. It's a good thing I have all those "tester" prints, since I used all of them trying to get this color right.

But I got it eventually, and went to work carving for what I hoped would be the last pass on the foliage. My plan was to roll a transparent gray once again over the entire block... darkening the bird and the plant in one go.

Transparent gray roll-up

And it worked! I now have three values of green in the image, but only used green ink once, on the first pass. And the bird has a mid-tone gray that will work great for the final black pass. Nifty trick, eh?

Reduction linocut in progress, Step 10

Except that it's not ready for the final black pass. The foliage really needs one more darker value or when the bird is finished it will look like it's just cut out and pasted on there. It won't be cohesive and there will be too much value contrast. (sigh) One more intermediate gray pass will be necessary... so two more color passes before the print is finished.

I'm still aiming to finish this week so I can get the next lino on the press right away. These will be the last two new pieces for the exhibition... and then... wheee! Framing. <wince>


  1. the foliage is really starting to jump off the paper! :)


Linocut in Progress: The Third Act

Time to wrap up this linocut ! And we are wrapping at warp speed (see what I did there?)... because there are deadlines. Exhibition deadline...