Monday, February 10, 2020

Linocut in Progress: Here we goooooooooo!

Although I hesitate to write these words "out loud," I think I have finally finished the last tweaks to the World Migratory Bird Day poster and t-shirt designs. Whew. Since the completion of the previous linocut (now titled "A Tern of the Tide") I also took a little time to carve and print a logo for my Learn Linocut online course that is still in development. (More about this later.)

But February is supposed to be my prime studio time, so I need to step away from all these other projects and get some linocutting done! 

It took a while for me to sift through several ideas and settle on a new composition. I'm going for something long and lean this time– 8" x 24." Fingers crossed that it turns out to be as interesting as I imagine it could be....


First stage carved and ready to print.

The subject matter is familiar... some birds and some water... but I'm trying for a different quality of water than I've attempted before, so I'm a little nervous about it. After a fair bit of carving I printed the first color, a transparent gray.

Oh, this long format is going to be hard to see... this image is slightly embiggenable with a click.

For a first color pass this gray seems a bit too dark, but I so often err on the side of too light that I decided to take a deep breath and go with it. Ultimately this image will have some very dark areas, and I'm counting on them to make this contrast seem less extreme.

Printing day for color pass #2 was gray and rainy. One might have hoped such a day would inspire immediate color mixing results when the desired ink color was a greenish-gray, but nope. It took me more than an hour to get the color and value the way I wanted it.
Color, color, who's got the color? Not me, not yet.

I planned to run a blended roll the entire length of the image, and luckily the other color was a straightforward transparent blue. Well, sort of straightforward. It still took me more than the usual amount of time to get the transparency level correct.

Some days you get the ink, and some days the ink gets you.

Finally rolling out some ink!

But I did get there eventually, and printing moved along relatively smoothly.

Reduction linocut in progress: Step 2 printed. Yep, you can embiggen it.

I think it's going okay so far, but it's early days. All this foreground white and gray is hopefully going to provide a good feeling of churning, foamy water close to the shore. That's the goal, anyway. I can't cross my fingers because that will make it impossible to carve the next stage, so you'll have to do the finger-crossing for me. Thanks in advance for your effort. I appreciate it!

Back to the carving table....

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