Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Christmas Card Update

Yay!  The cards came!  And they look pretty good.  8-]

Tay and the Night Visitor

They're good sturdy card stock too.  We're pleased.  We went with Overnight Prints.  Only took a week (there abouts).

Anyone who wants to get on my xmas card list, just send me your mailing address!

Friday, December 03, 2010

2010 Christmas Card

Ta-Da!  The Christmas card is done and ordered.  The image is more saturated than the woodcut print (wish I could print such rich color!).  We ordered it thru Overnight Prints.  We'll see how they do.  Not that there will be time to redo the whole thing.  Crossed fingers!

I always say I'm going to start earlier next year, and I never do.  But I sure hope I do next time.  This last minute business is frangling.  Maybe Christmas in July?  ;- p

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Test Print -- Press

Ok, this isn't too bad.  Recarving really helped.  Also I think my pressure was too high on the press yesterday.  Alignment seems to work.  I'm getting happy.  8-]

Not sure I care for the pinky-looking chop tho.  Maybe I'll go back to blue.

Test Block 2 - Recarving

I have a tendency to carve too fine of lines that disappear in the printing process.  So I'm recarving the stonework on block 2 to make it more visible.  Recarved some elements on block 1 as well.  Half way thru all the cobbles.

And then on to another test print.


Ok, I recarved both blocks. 

The stonework took the most time, so I didn't get to make another test print yet.  Maybe after dinner.

Test Print - Block 1

Less than satisfying test print.  I have a tendency to carve delicate lines when I really need to dig deeper.  Detail on Tay is disappearing.  Back to the carving board a bit today.

This was on the press.  I think I'll try the baren to see if I get something different.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Test Print -- Xmas Card

Very rough test print, just to see how the blocks work together.  Poor alignment is operator error.  ;-j  I definitely think it's going to work!

Stonework's a little dark, but I think it'll work.  Have to work on inking techniques next.  I need to make myself some felt daubers.

This one's better.  And I can see how I have to carve away more of the board, around Tay especially.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Block 2 Almost There

Almost there on block 2.  Still a little more to clear away on the stonework before I can test print, but Thanksgiving prep may postpone that until after the holiday.

I like how it's coming.  I just hope I can align the two blocks!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Block 2 -- Christmas 2010

Starting to carve block 2.  Outlined the antlers and working on the stonework.

I finished up some detail on block 1 as well.  Anything else will have to wait for a test print.

And back to block 2.


And back at it again this morning.  Got another hour in.


I powdered the block to get a better view of the stonework.  I'm trying to decide whether to carve the mortar or leave it dark.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Carving -- Christmas 2010

 I started carving the first block last night, just to get it off the ground. 

Back at it again today.  This took a couple hours.

And here's a close-up of the block.  I may have to clear away a little more around the elements.  I'll see when I test print it.  Still have more details to carve.

I have a couple small brayers and bake, or Japanese stencil brushes that should work nicely for inking.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Transfering Cartoon -- Christmas 2010

Transfering the cartoon to the blocks today.  I'm tracing the same image on both blocks, even tho I won't be carving the same elements on both.  Partly for alignment and partly because I'm obsessvie/compulsive about it.  ;- j

Here's the process.  I carved a couple of kento-like notches in the cartoon to aid in placement.

Here's where I've chalked the back of the cartoon so I can trace it onto the blocks.  Normally I use a pink or yellow chalk, which works really great with black dyed boards.  But I had to switch to black chalk for it to show up on the stained boards.  I just have to remember which system I'm using and stick with it.

I like to carve details like the stonework or the antlers freehand as I go.  There has to be some surprise in the piece to keep it lively.

Enough displacing.  Back to work.  ;- j

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Coloring Cartoons

Working out the colors for the two blocks.  The first block will have the major areas of color -- sky, reindeer, Tay.

The second block will have the detailed bits -- stonework, antlers, harness, initials.

Actually I'll carve this:

And this:

I can roll on the major areas of color and tap on the fiddly bits, like the harness.

It works on paper.  We shall see if it works in wood.  ;- j


I restained the boards, so I won't be able to transfer the cartoons today.  Tomorrow.

Also, in restaining the boards, I noticed a straight line coming up on both boards.  Looks like a spot where one top laminate sheet was attached to another.  It's smooth to the touch, but I don't know if it will show on the print, like wood grain.  I've considered the cartoons, and I'll probably be able to avoid the area for most of the printing surface.  Guess we'll see.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Christmas Card Chimera

Here's my chimera.  Something only a mother could love.  ;- j  I'm about to draw my cartoon.  Then I'll sand and stain the boards.  Going for two this time...I hope.  We shall see!


Friday, November 12, 2010

Design Stage -- Christmas Card

The Schuyler House Christmas card is in the design stage.  That's Tay, the office dog (or one of them, but he's there most days).  He greets everyone with the hope of getting up a game of tug or fetch.  I imagined him greeting Santa's team on the castle ramparts.*

I googled oodles of reindeer, castle crenellations, even the harness Santa prefers.  ;->  I don't know what I'd do without the internet for inspiration and research.

I might crop out some of the reindeer to give the impression of the rest of the team behind him.

*The Schuyler House logo is a castle.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Centerfold 8-]

Hey, I'm in a centerfold.  8-]

Ok, so it's for CHEM 13 news, Dept. of Chemistry, University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada.  ;->

This from Jenn Shmitt, the co-ordinator:

It's that time again... more Periodic Table Print Project News.

The September issue of the Chem13 News features our project (we're even the centerfold!).  They were so inspired that they have started their own periodic table project--open to more media than just printmaking-- as part of the University's celebration of the Year of Chemistry, 2011. 

Here's my contribution to the project:  Titanium.

And the colophon:

Titanium, atomic number 22, is light, strong, lustrous and resistant to corrosion, even in sea water. It is a silvery-white metal and can be alloyed with iron, aluminium, vanadium and other elements to produce many lightweight alloys. It is used in everything from spacecraft to dental implants, and because it can burn in both air and nitrogen, it makes great fireworks.

Titanium was discovered in England in1791 and was named for the Titans of Greek mythology. I took my inspiration from the Titan allusion and have displayed the most famous Titan, Prometheus, who brought fire to mankind, against the wishes of an angry Zeus.

Here is Prometheus with a high-tech, titanium robotic arm, holding aloft a burst of fireworks. As serendipity would have it, fireworks can look remarkably like a spray of fennel blossoms, the seed of which Prometheus hid fire in to sneak it past the Gods.

No good deed goes unpunished, but that’s another story.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Tony's Pictures from Our Show

Here's a link for Tony's pictures from our studio show:

He caught a few things we missed.

Thanx everybody for a great show!  8-]

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Pictures from Our "Garden Party" Studio Show

I've uploaded pictures from our "garden party" studio show to this site:

It was a great experience and I'm so glad we did it, despite our trepidations.  I think I might even do it again sometime.  8-]

Monday, October 25, 2010

Light, Paint & Ink -- Our Studio Show

Wo0t! 8-]

What a great show! I can't believe how well it all went. We had perfect weather, a terrific display, and people came! ;-D

Of course we couldn't have done it without the help of our great friends.  I sure can't count and I was glad to have Karen to handle all the money so professionally.  Tom was indispensable with all the set-up, and always so cheerful -- even in the face of stressed-out artists.
 Laurie's food was scrumptious, and every time I turned around, there was Steph with a plate of cheese or cookies...even sandwiches.  It was nice to have the waters handy. I sure talked myself dry. (The wine was nice too.) ;->

Roy and Aida and others were all so helpful with the set-up and support. It's good to have such good friends.

And I can't believe people actually came in response to our postcards and e-mail! My friend Pat, who ended up buying something from both Tina and myself, only came because of that last e-postcard. Boy was that a smart idea!  We got great advice from Laura and Belinda and Maria and other old hands in the art fair and show biz.

There was art everywhere. Who knew we were so prolific?! It boggles the mind. Tina and Tony's pro panels looked really professional, but I have to say our pvc pipe and wire mesh panels worked really well too. We'd make a couple improvements to the system, but it stood up to the task (if the label cards did tend to blow thither and yon all day).

 I think we all did fabulously well for our first studio show. I sold a number of pieces -- including one to my sister who called during the show!)  I even made a commission and a trade.

Now I've got to get busy and print up a couple blocks.  And I've got the Loscon Art Show to get ready for.

No rest for the wicked.  ;-j

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Almost There...

We set up the display panels and the pop-up in Tina & Tony's backyard.

The corners are staked and zippy-tied to hold them down.  We'll hang the art tomorrow morning.

Here's the pile-o-art all bagged up and ready to go into the van.  Like my vicious guard dogs?  ;-j

I just hope they don't chew on anything in the middle of the night!

Now off to bed and up with the birdies.

Friday, October 22, 2010

At the Wiring Stage

I'm at the wiring stage now -- 8 or 9 pics to go.  Everything's matted and framed.  Then on to labels.

I use my bed for arranging art for the panels, and for a record of what's in the show.  Here's one bedful.

It's not meant to be archival, just a guideline.  I find once I get to a show, I've forgotten what I have, let alone where I was going to hang it.  ;-]

Bill thinks we should arrange the panels in an X, for stability.  Sounds like a plan.  We're setting up panels and tables tomorrow, hanging art on Sun.  Down to the wire.

Oh yeah, wiring.  ;- j  Back to it.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Matting, Framing & Stashing

Matting, framing and stashing art for my studio show.  What a production!

Think I should've started this process awhile ago (but then I wouldn't be the champion of procrastination).  ;-j

Oh well, I wouldn't have so many pieces left to frame up if I didn't have all the art, so I guess it's a good thing.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

SCAA Art Classic XXI

Woo and Hoo!  I sold Paleo-Horsefly, the woodcut I entered into the SCAA Art Classic XXI this year.  The reception and awards ceremony was today.

I'm happy it went to a good home, a horse lover with her own horse.  8-]

Here's a pic of myself and Sandra Cattell, my pleasant patron of the arts.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Two Weeks to Go!

Two weeks to go until our studio art show.  ;-]  Working on my e-mailing list now.  Just going thru my address book and making a couple groups.  I'm sure there'll be some duplicates, as my address book is very haphazard.  Hopefully people will let me know so I can remove the dupes.  I plan to use blind carbon copy in any case.

Of course I should be framing up some more woodcuts.  Oh well, they're not going to frame themselves.  ;->

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Display Panel Production Line

Bill and I made three more display panels out of pvc pipe and fencing.  It went pretty quickly once we knew what we were doing.  ;-j

We'll tie them together with zippy-ties, but if we need to, we can add bracing bars across the top.

Our studio show is less than three weeks away.  Lots to do, but at least the display panels can be checked off the list.  ;-]