Thursday, December 10, 2009

linocut wrapping paper

I decided to try making my own wrapping paper this year. I have plenty of Wondercut linoleum, so I got out my cutters and gave it a go! Below are the results:

I will do a lot of things differently next year, such as:
-Make larger "stamps" so that I can get more printed with each inking.
-Wrap gifts first, then print. Since my stamps were small and not totally covering every part of my craft paper, on some gifts I've wound up having very little printing in prominent places, ack!
-Reink EVERY print. I thought I'd save time and energy by using each stamp twice before re-inking. I also thought the faded, rustic look would be desirable... in the end, I think it looks too.. country? and not crisp enough for my taste.
-Maybe use ink instead of paint? I used paint because I have tons of it and it's cheaper than ink, but sometimes maybe you get what you pay for?

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Treetop Love Factories

Dear blog, I finished my newest linocut yesterday. I finally broke down and bought some big sheets of linoleum and new cutting tools. I got a set of 4 Namisei Moku Hanga To cutters, and I am incredibly happy with them. I bought Blick's Wondercut linoleum, and it cuts like a dream.

I got the idea for this woodcut from a National Geographic article about Redwood trees that are so huge that other trees grow on their limbs and get big enough to produce cones. I had this image in my mind of little villages or factories all on tree limbs, and maybe the tree limbs were so large that the villages and/or factories weren't even aware that they weren't on the ground. But, obviously the trees in the linocut are leaning more towards birches than redwoods.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

handmade salmon

Dear blog,
I've been making lots of salmon-related things lately. First was my halloween costume, then my newest woodcut.
The new woodcut, which I think I'm calling "Upstream", is aaaalmost my biggest yet. I have sore hands to prove it.
My Halloween costume was made out of 3/4" foam, which I painted in a salmon-y fashion. I then made it into a sash with a ribbon.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

new Etsy shop

I just opened a brand new Etsy shop exclusively for woodcuts. Although they come from wood, they have such a different feel from the things in my original Etsy shop, I thought they warranted their own place. Check it!

I'm going to be hard at work producing more woodcuts over the next few months, because I just found out that I'm going to be having a solo show at a gallery here in Anchorage!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

2 new woodcuts

I finished these woodcuts in record speed. I have a portfolio review for a solo show today, so I wanted to finish a few more woodcuts to round out my collection.
I like to show both the black and white, and painted versions of the woodcuts because they have totally different feels and appeal to different people.
I wanted to incorporate salmon into a woodcut somehow, and I was really at a loss and couldn't come up with any ideas that I liked. I had only 3 days to begin and complete this woodcut, and I wasted an entire day rummaging through ideas in my head trying to find something I liked. Luckily, the next morning the idea just popped into my head. I love it when my subconscious brain chimes in and solves creative dilemmas.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

framed woodcuts

Yesterday I framed 6 woodcuts to go in a gallery here in Anchorage. I think they look really nice in their new frames. This will be the first time I've shown and attempted to sell any woodcuts, so I'm pretty excited. There were some older ladies at the frame shop who were pretty crazy for my prints, which is exciting because I would certainly not expect them to be my audience.
"Contrast & Compare"
"Wind, Power"
"Cacti, bike, yard"
"Products from the Sky"
"Gifts from God"

Friday, October 9, 2009

new necklaces

I just finished some new necklaces for an Anchorage gallery. There will be some funkier, chunkier ones on the way as well!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

wind, power woodcut

Today I made a print of my newest woodcut. This one happened much more quickly and with much more planning than usual. I had been visualizing different versions of it for a while, then I made a quick mock-up of sorts in Illustrator, then once I was happy with the composition, away I cut.
I achieved the 2 color effect by cutting my half-finished woodcut with a saber saw to separate the 2 areas. Maybe in the serious printmaking world people might find another way to accomplish both colors in the same print, but since I am pretty handy with a saw, this seemed to be the easiest way.
I've debated cleaning up the background of the powerline poles, but I've decided that it would look too clean and not as rugged and woodcut-y.
Here's a photo of the woodcut itself, with both pieces of wood pushed together. When making the prints, I ink the pieces separately, then I pull masking tape tight around the external edge of the rectangle, securing both pieces together and allowing myself to easily make the whole print at once.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

fishy fisheyes

I finally got some film developed that contained everything from my trip to China, to the drive to Alaska, to Halibut fishing! This second fishingpole photo is probably my favorite from the whole roll.
I used to "shoot from the hip" way more often and I'm going to try to make it a point to start again. I need to put my collection of weird cameras back to work!
Here we are on a hike to... Crow Pass, maybe? Its always exciting to see a fisheye-enhanced Sara arm.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

treasury & nerdy photos

Two things, of varying excitement levels... My new pink CACTUS made it to the front page on Etsy (see below), and Daniel took some nerdy pictures of me holding my cacti.
Up next: Black trees for Halloween? I think so.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

pink cactus

So, cacti now come in pink. I've made so many pink cacti via custom orders, I thought I'd see what happened if I kept pink cacti in stock. Time will tell. For sale in the shop!

PS- These photos were shot yesterday in my new backyard!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

not all new birds are blue birds

I had some smaller birds laser cut and finally got around to giving them a paint-stain. I really like the effect of this, since you can still see a hint of the grain through the paint.

I also have been toying with making things out of acrylic, but I just can't seem to find the right thickness. This bird is made out of 1/8" thick acrylic, but I'm afraid that it is just too fragile. Back to the drawing board!

Monday, July 20, 2009

mustard bathroom

I undertook the massive task of removing the old wallpaper in our downstairs bathroom and painted the walls a warm mustard yellow color. I don't think these photos do the color any justice. We also replaced the vanity, towel ring, and switch covers.
I got this shelf a few years ago at a thrift store, and I still think it is so super cool. It is flat-pack and was injection molded. It has a lot of neat detail and assembles so nicely.
I also hung up some Charlie Harper-inspired paintings I did a few years ago. We're going to be putting slate floors in this bathroom, too, so no talk of the old floors just yet!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

another 3 months, another woodcut

I finally finished the woodcut that I started 3 months ago in Florida! What I really like about woodcuts is that they are hard work! And, they take such a long time! I generally work very quickly and have a natural urge to produce multiples of whatever I'm making, which can sometimes get a little out of hand- sometimes I have too many of things I've made that I don't know what to do with. So, making something that can produce prints is a good solution for this urge, since it takes forever and I can make multiples that are very easy to store!
Sometimes I get so used to seeing the carved wood block that I feel almost a disconnect from the actual print, since it is positive and backward compared to how I originally envisioned the scene in my head.

I tried this one on white and tan-ish paper, but I can't decide which I prefer since they both change the feel of the print dramatically, I think.