Thursday, February 17, 2011

Miniature Wood Block

For one of my printmaking classes we had an assignment to make a print that was 2"x2". At the beginning of the class I had some reservations about my skill as a carver so I stuck to larger prints to prevent myself from becoming obsessive over detail work. At this point my smallest print was just under two feet across. However, I felt like my abilities were improving and I decided to jump into that challenge. 

I looked back through some photographs I had taken for some inspiration. I found a picture I had taken in the Boston Museum of Art. It was a picture of a Japanese screen print; a skyline set against an atmosphere full of the serene peaches and pinks of a sunrise. The photo I took didn't do the original justice so I decided to recreate it as a print. 

Originally I had only intended to to make it a black and white print, which is why I filled the sky with lines. As I was testing the print I realized it was lacking that punch from the colors so I added another block for the sky. I got ambitious and bought these vibrant colors. I mixed them on the table and smashed them onto the roller so it would appear as a smooth transition. This was the first time I had ever used color inks for a print and I was already mixing them and adding layers. I was so worried that I was getting ahead of myself. 

But when I saw how the first one turned out - I fell in love. It was a very tiny, abstracted version of the original masterpiece still hanging in Boston, but I felt as though I had finally done it justice. The lines ripping through the sky made it more dynamic and unique to my style. And the colors I was so worried about ended up transferring beautifully. 

I was so excited about how they turned out that I ended up making about forty of them. I use them when I make my home made cards. If you are lucky, you just might get one. 

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