Monday, September 9, 2013

29 Faces in September--#14 and #15

So...here are the next two.  I really need to work on how to do patterns to make grays.  I just found a book I bought a couple years ago called The Woodcut Artists Handbook by George Walker.  It's a fabulous book, with a lot of information, most of which I skipped over when I bought the book, but which I am now studying. It's way way better than the book I bought recently, Learning Linocut by Susan Yeates. The Walker book has tons of fabulous pictures by all kinds of woodcut, wood engraving and linocut artists, so even without reading any of the text, one can get a lot of really good ideas for how to do things by studying the pictures.
This is #14--a second state print, with the gray areas cross-hatched instead of just hatched (and for those of you who've been looking at my work over the years, I can just hear you saying "Well, I was wondering when she'd get around to cross-hatching again.  I'm surprised she could hold out this long.")  I don't think it's the "solution", but it is an option.  I'll be exploring others on the next faces.  This one is 4" X 6".


This is #15, also 4" X 6" and also a second state print.  AND, I'm proud to say, I took the reference photo for this one myself.  But it was interesting.  I was trying to make a drawing from the reference photo, and it was turning out stiff stiff stiff.  The guy in the picture was quite dynamic, and the drawing wasn't capturing any of that.  That, I find, is the problem with using photographs for references.  I was trying so hard to get all the shapes and proportions right, and it just wasn't working.  I will not post that drawing here, so no one will be able to say, "Wow, she really doesn't know how to draw at all...."  So I tried again, and the second time, I treated it as a gesture drawing, much more loose, and sure enough, after only a couple of lines, it captured the feeling of it, and then I could be more precise about actual shapes, fitting those into the loose gesture.  The next problem was cutting, but I'll work on that some more later.  I started cutting away a big area that was supposed to be black--my brain isn't fully trained yet--and in one of the demonstrations in Walker's book, he shows inking the woodblock with black, so it's really really clear where to cut, whereas I just have lines traced onto my block, and I have to be smart enough to figure out (looking at my drawing for reference) which parts are to be cut and which parts aren't, and I'm kindof slow sometimes.  Also, I'm having gray issues.....

15 comments:

  1. Awesome. I love watching your process and progress as you work on a medium. I especially like crosshatching on the top guy.

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  2. Hello! Your faces are so great! I love their black and whiteness and their expressions, so full of character! Thanks for your very kind comment, have a happy week!

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  3. I'm still lovin' these prints … your faces are so bold and expressive! Merry creating!

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  4. And by the way … I agree with you in how working from photos can stiffen up an expression.

    I'm waiting patiently to see your next prints!

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  5. Both of these are very good and especially the upper one has very personal style to my eye.

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  6. Your cross hatching is very effective, but I am stunned by the drama of No 15 which has only a little cross hatching but has the drama of the start black and white. Your prints are wonderful.
    Thank you for your comment on my Day 10 face for 29 Faces. I am sorry for the loss of your father, and do apologise if I distressed you. I did worry that people who had lost a family member or friend to that terrible disease might be upset, but I wanted to highlight Alzheimers in the hope that it would help others to understand its effects on the person and on their family and friends.
    Once again, I am so sorry if I have distressed you. Jez

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  7. Wow!! These are great!! I love what you've done here.

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  8. I so adore these portraits, they are so lively and dynamic!

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  9. Wonderful works here! It´s interesting to read about how you are working too.

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  10. These are wonderful prints. Wood cutting sounds quite time consuming. Are you making one a day for this challenge?

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  11. Wonderful!! You seem to be getting even more detail in these latest pieces. Great characters :)

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  12. terrific post. i learn so much here. now i need to get the book. but i better beware of going off on a wonderful wood block tangent. thanks.

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  13. Just been browsing you faces so far. I am awed how you manage to make such amazing and unique expressions in your prints. I look forward to what you create next!! :)

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