Color Woodblock Prints
I have been a painter for over 30 years. In 2007 I took a workshop in Moku Hanga, Japanese watercolor woodblock printmaking, and fell in love with all parts of the process: designing an image, carving the blocks and experimenting with colors while proof printing, refining the blocks and ink colors, eventually printing the image. This is a simple low-tech form of printmaking, using brushes to apply watercolor paints and printing with a hand-held baren. This has become my primary medium.
In my search for balance, energy, peace and connection to the earth, I spend as much time as possible out of doors, hiking, cross-country skiing, kayaking, gardening and painting or observing birds in their habitats in New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Downeast Maine and coastal New Brunswick, Canada. This interaction with the natural world is the source of my inspiration.
I usually begin an image with sketches or paintings done on-site, and then refine and simplify the design, focusing on the lines of movement and the essential shapes that define the image. After figuring out how many blocks are needed, and how to separate the design, I transfer the line drawings in reverse to wood blocks. On each block, I remove the areas that will not print using a variety of sharp Japanese carving knives, and this leaves the raised (relief) image. After mixing up colors of water-based paints, I apply them along with rice paste to the raised areas of the block. I place dampened paper on the block, and rub it with a baren to transfer the image. Multiple blocks are used, one for each color; overprinting two colors creates additional colors on the print.
I primarily use Rives, a 100% cotton French paper, but sometimes use handmade Japanese paper. All matting and framing materials are acid free and archival.