Friday, December 19, 2014

Happy Holidays























Thanks to all of you for reading my blog. This year's card is a small intaglio plate that started as a soap ground test. I just really love how I can get similar effects to tusche washes in lithography on my copper plates by using the soap ground. And there is always a little surprise involved, because I can never control the etch entirely. When I pull the first print after I etch the plate, it's always a bit like magic to see the image for the first time.
Happy Holidays to you all!

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Searching

The initial idea for this piece changed considerably throughout the process. I don't even really have a sketch for this piece, because I worked more spontaneously directly on the plate. Again, I did quite a bit of scraping and re-etching, which resulted in some of the really subtle tones on the plate. It's a bit hard to see in the photograph of this piece, but there is quite a bit of patterning and mark making in form of deeply etched black lines that sit on top of the black aquatint. Perhaps you can imagine what the beautifully raised lines on top of the black ground look and feel like.






















Searching. 
Intalgio, Chine-Collé. 
30cm x 30cm. 2014.

Sensing

I came across a short text by Meister Eckhart the other day, in which he talks about our outer self and our inner self, which are hinged in our center like a door. I just read the text in passing, but it resonated somewhere within me and inspired this piece. The print went through many stages of scraping, sanding and re-etching. The heavy editing and re-working of this plate was part of an exercise I imposed on myself to respond to marks I had already created. In the end the piece looked surprisingly like the ink sketch, which I didn't necessarily intend, although I did try to imitate some of the fluidity of the ink washes on the copper plate. It is a rather dark print, but I like the subtle tonal shifts in the background that happened through multiple soap ground etches. One of reasons why I wanted to translate the drawings into prints was that the cut out figures were just too separate from the ground I stuck them on. The looked too much like cut-outs. I wanted the figures and the ground to be on the same plain, to be more integrated in the image as a whole. 





















(Above)
Sensing.
Intaglio, Chine-Collé.
30cm x 30cm. 2014.

(Below)
Ink on Paper. 


Reaching

The concepts that mostly emerged in my work in the past few weeks had to do with some kind of searching or trying to reach. I don't want to write much about the content of my pieces, because I find it difficult to put into words. As for process, in the ink drawing below I used a straw to blow through to create the neuron-like shapes. For the etching I initially tried to re-create a similar spontaneous pattern with a sugar lift, but the sugar solution was heavier than the ink and simply did not spread with the same speed on the surface of the copper, resulting in a rather clumsy and heavy looking result. I ended up starting over using scans of ink splashes on paper that I exposed to a screen. I screenprinted an acrylic resist onto the copper plate, added the aquatint and through that process I was able to re-create the ink marks on my plate.






















(Above)
Reaching.
Intaglio, Chine-Collé.
30cm x 30cm. 2014.

(Below)
Ink on Paper. 
                                                                                                                                                                       

Sketches

It's been way too long since I posted last time, but school has kept me more than busy. I started without much of a plan of what I wanted to do this semester. I had several different ideas I wanted to follow and I decided to somehow work through some of my grief after my father's sudden death in an accident this past summer. I ended up making a series of ink drawings with collaged photos to generate images and ideas more rapidly than an etching allows. Unfortunately I was not overly satisfied with the drawings and I do not consider them finished pieces, but rather a series of sketches to work through new ideas and different kinds of mark makings. The spaces in the images have become a lot emptier than most of my previous work, which was part of the exercise. I enjoyed responding to some of the qualities of the ink, which is so much more fluid than etching in copper, but I also got bored more easily working directly on paper instead of working through the various processes of creating a printing plate. I also found that the images were lacking visual cohesion; the figures seemed very separate from the ground. I'll post a few of the drawings here to show some of the process I go through as an artist. I'll post the images I chose to translate into prints in subsequent posts.