Monday, June 1, 2015

Print Shop, Allegan County Historical Society


This is just one corner of the Print Shop owned by the Allegan County Historical Society. Today was my first day cleaning up and organizing, helped by my son Carl. We'd like to have it ready for demonstrations (even a small demo!) for the Allegan Fiber Fest and County Fair. Amazing vintage equipment has been donated to the Society, it just needs to be cleaned, organized, and in some cases, repaired. We had a lot of fun doing an inventory and starting to clean up. It was an amazing afternoon.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

My Professional Practices class is having an exhibit, XVIII Collective Individuals. There are eighteen people in the class and each work is to address the theme "eighteen." My contribution is a book (I hope) of etchings, eighteen pages, with images of small toys and objects, increasing through the book from one to eighteen. The toys are meant to be like little talismans; to me the book is a visual meditation on the passing of childhood. The ledger theme is present also; for me it stands for assessment and assigning values. This paper is not intended for printmaking and is giving me a lot of problems, to the point where I'm running out of paper. I may have to do some of the prints on a different paper, and print the ledger pattern afterwards. (I scanned it just in case.)

Tuesday, April 7, 2015


I've been experimenting with book forms that can be printed all on one sheet, and then cut and folded to make the separate pages. This is a Snake Book, so called because the pages follow an "S" path on the page, like a curving snake. This picture shows the sheet laid out flat, but once it is cut and folded up the pages all face one direction in the correct reading order. I decided to use a related subject matter, a poem about a snake by Emily Dickinson. The illustrations are a comic strip style, since it was fast and easy to do, and goes along with the "childhood innocence" theme of the poem. The illustrations on the covers (front cover shown above) are scanned from an old field guide. The book fully opened is on a sheet 14.5" x 9.5", which folds up to 4" x 3.25" once the covers are applied to the first and last page. This is a small edition, printed from an aluminum plate lithograph.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Ledger monoprint


I'm experimenting with adding color to ledger paper with  monoprints. This paper is from a notebook of ledger paper Eana Agopian gave me. I put of coat of Yes brand paste on an acrylic sheet and added the colored imagery with pastels, then printed it on the paper. It was very difficult to remove the thin paper from the acrylic, I had to mist it with water. I realized this method works better with a better, thicker paper-- but I did manage to peel this off. Again, just experimenting. 

Monday, December 1, 2014

Success with plastic plate lithography



I ruined a few aluminum lithograph plates this weekend, but luckily had bought a bunch of plastic plates from Graphic Chemical when we were there three weeks ago. I had mixed results with plastic plates last summer, but they worked well yesterday. This plate has two drawings from the Religious Subversives series.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

American Insects finished



Here is the finished etching, with aquatint, of the "potatoes were the waiters" page, with digital text added. Classmate Laurie Hunt suggested the fade-out of repetitive lines. The possibility of hand-coloring the etchings was also suggested. I finished all three books: The Fly, The Potatoes' Dance, and Depressed by a Book of Bad Poetry, I Walk Toward an Unused Pasture and Invite the Insects To Join Me. The last page of the latter is shown below:













 
It's a lot of scanning to add all the pages of each book but I'd like to make Picasa albums of them in the future. I made slipcases for each set of books, (edition of three) the spine label for the slipcase looks like this:

The three small etchings on the label are repeated on the title page of each book.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Progress on "The Potatoes' Dance"



These are proof etchings for the book The Potatoes' Dance, illustrating the poem by Vachel Lindsay. Aquatint and etched lettering will be added; the lettering here is just written on with pencil. It will be series of ten etchings, bound in a long strip, accordian-style.

I received a very kind letter from Nicholas Lindsay, giving me permission to use his father's poem.