Hand Pulled Prints, Books, Drawings and More

Friday, September 30, 2011

Inspiration for October

Autumn and spring are both influential times of the year. Where I live in northern Nevada they are short, perfunctory, a cusp of time between more earnest seasons. In my desert the sun is harsh, no matter when it shines, and the wind is just as tireless. Fall's signature is curvaceous and bright before the dry paleness of winter begins.

Fantastic link on the Inkheads blog lead me to a demonstration of a basic lithography process you can do in your kitchen. They recommend you have an etching press but keep that wooden spoon handy in case you don't find a mint-condition press in the middle of the road on your way home tonight.

Do you draw? Do you hate drawing? Do you like being connected to drawers everywhere? Check out the Sketchbook Project; a moving, growing, digitizing library of art books by creators from all over the United States. You can even sign up to participate!

Marriage. Between people it is a connection that escapes definition because each union is so diverse, so natural and so private. If you think of a white princess cut dress whenever you hear this word get inspired by a true Maharani. From the design, traditions, and flowers to the dancing, lenghas and religions this is celebration in a different light.

Keep in touch to learn about the calligraphy class I'm attending and find out about my next craft fair appearance in the Reno area.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Black Rock Press Book Arts Show

Black Rock Press student work on display

The art of binding books is ancient. Today students are still learning the craft of stitching, folding and cutting books by hand at different universities, museums and conventions all around the world. Reno and the University of Nevada, Reno are undeniably lucky to have Bob Blesse and the Black Rock Press. Bob's studio features many different letterpress machines, driven by foot, pedal and motor, as well as hundreds of pieces of wooden and metal type for student use.

Books created by his students will be on display at the McKinley Arts & Culture Center in downtown Reno until Friday, September 23rd and this is not a show to be missed. Students often produce some of the most interesting books as they are still in the exploratory stage of book creation. There will be a variety of techniques and materials in the exhibit and did I mention that it's free?

Head down to Riverside Drive, just beside the Keystone Bridge, and follow the signs to the Book Arts Exhibits. Find them on Facebook to keep up on future exhibits and more.  You won't be disappointed and you might just get inspired.

Don't forget I am teaching Beginning Book Binding this November at the NMA, you will be able to learn most of the methods featured in the show during my workshop!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Procrastination is NOT your friend!

Plans are always subject to change.  This fact will not change for Hell, high-water or a different definition of Earthly physics.  Even if you thrive on deadlines and early morning trips to the post office it is always a good idea to have a contingency or three for when your plans list lazily, or ferociously, to the left.  Organization can be a struggle for me given that I have an abhorrent memory.  To combat this defect I write down just about everything that comes my way.  Whether it's info about the next show I can participate in or what time my cat needs to take his medicine most of my life is held within the little pages of my daily journal.
On rare occasion I find myself slightly more organized that usually forecasted, as in the case with the La Calacas International Print Exchange.  I had just finished my IPE edition and was itching for another exchange, something with an attractive theme, a small edition size, and a deadline of a month or so.  All I wanted and more was in La Calacas, not only was it a skull/Dia de los Muertos theme but it was scheduled to travel to Nicaragua! I paid my fee, started etching a plate and was able to send my prints off in a timely manner. This afternoon I received an email from Carlos Barberena, the organizer of the exchange and a printmaker from Granada, letting me know that my prints arrived safe, sound, and on time!

Hark! What great news! It almost never happened.
Due to schedule changes and family obligations I had to alter my original plans of when to print. Luckily I had given myself a week of wiggle time to work on my plate, change my mind and more. Because I had begun my plate and printing process almost eight days early I was able to submit to this fantastic exchange. Please go check out the photos and look at the lovely work submitted by other artists from all around the world including Nicaragua, the U.S. and Mexico.

Also look out for the InkHeads - the printmaking group based at my alma mater and trying to make their way to the national printmaking convention, Southern Graphics Conference International. I am lucky to be showing with them this October during their fundraiser show.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Print Exchanges Etc.

Sneak peek at my latest plate
Sometimes it's difficult to find the proper motivation when beginning a project or body of work. For this reason it's great to participate in events involving other artists whether they are openings, social meetings or exchanges. Printmakers enjoy the ability to create multiples and that makes exchanging educational, interesting and helps connections with other artists. It's also a way to watch what other artists are doing and get inspired. This year I got excited and signed up for about eight exchanges so that's just about all I've been working on this summer. I find it helpful to work on things that are unrelated in theme and size to find out if there are certain motifs emerging. 

This plate is for La Calacas
After organizing 2.25 I have even more respect for the dedicated people who initiate and follow through on the print exchanges in which I participate. The most fun part is revealing all the prints! I wouldn't want to spoil that surprise, but I would like to give you a glimpse. Links to print exchange galleries and better photos will arrive soon after the curators post.

My IPE 2011 prints, can't give it away yet!