Friday, December 4, 2015

Been a long time been a long time....

Well I have some time this morning to update all my fans. All two of you... :-)

So spent most of the summer at the cabin doing some work. Had to replace the back deck since it was rotting and getting dangerous.

It came out rather nice. New steps were a big hit for my Mother-in-law Betty, who at 92 needs all the help she can when it comes to stairs.

After that I started back on my moose head made out of birch bark sculpture for the cabin. After all the tests with the paper folding idea templates I found that birch bark does not work like real paper and trying to line up all the tabs was insane since there were over 1000 of them. Tossed that idea finally.

So start over for the third time.

I decided that if I had a form I could use to wrap the birch bark around then I might have a much better chance. If it worked then I could do many of them. Decided to do a blank with some left over blue foam board left over from a cabin project. Did some research and found that 3M Super 77 spray glue works with foam. So off we go!

Made a heck of a mess but it worked out.

Then I got my hot glue gun out and started applying the bark.

Had to take a trip to Berlin Germany so brought it back home with us and I started up again in my studio at home. I added more bark knowing that I had to cut out the foam blank. Once I had enough bark together to hold the shape I cut the bark from the top of the form to the middle of the head and popped out the blue foam blank. Was sweating bullets but it worked out just great. the blank form is now ready for deer head number 2.

The antlers were fun to figure out how to do but with some coat hanger wire...

Showed the following picture to a total stranger at a print show opening that I was in and she exclaimed "Oh! A pig deer!!"

Dang... next day I did a deer rhinoplasty and she was right this looks much more natural.


Then I did some follow up work and then did two coats of polyacrylic and it darkened it up and also added some stability to the antlers.

Of to the annual Rochester Contemporary Art Center Members show it goes. 

Then on opening night I found out I won the "WOW" award. Gosh.....

Me on the far left with all the other award winners from that night

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Second Place award at the Allentown Outdoor Art Festival 2015.

"Brooklyn Bridge Transposed"  - 14" x 21" 
#Brooklyn Bridge Art #Brooklyn Bridge Print
Second Place Ribbon for Drawing and Graphics. Boy that feels good.

Here is the framed work and ribbon.

My tent set up at the Allentown Art Festival, in Buffalo NY.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

First out door show with my new tent.

I've never done one of these shows so I picked a local one that would allow me to have two weekends so that I can practice my tenting skills.

So I purchased a used tent from an oil landscape artist that was giving up doing art shows since her new day job is taking up all her time. It didn't come with display walls so I had to figure out how to do that with out spending a ton of money. So I read on one of the artist forums that you can buy these plastic mesh tarps and use them instead of getting the mesh walls from the other tent manufactures. So I found 6" x 10' white mesh tarps for $32.00 each. So I bought three of them from here:

Then needing something to attach the bottom of the mesh to I went to the electrical section of  Home Depot and being an ex electrician, purchased 3 10 foot 1/2 inch medal conduit and 6 hanging brackets. Self tapping screws and a drill and I got something at the bottom to bungee the tarp too.

So for about $150 I have three nice mesh panels and they are much thicker than the Flourish ones and do not move about at all in the wind. The Flourish ones run about $695.  

My Mesh walls


Now how to get the tent to the site without a big SUV or trailer? Why use my trusty Kayak roof racks!!

Then after a bit of mucking about on Friday and Saturday I was ready for the Non-Art crowd.

It was really just a craft and low end art, except for the woman next to me that was doing sculptures and drawings.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Issues printing using an etching press and 1/4 inch woodblock prints. Solved!

I had some problems using the etching press at Genesee Center For the Arts. Printing worked well for small prints but for large not so good. I had some bounce and to much pressure and paper was pushing off the print. So after much investigation and web research from those with the same issues, this is what I have come up.
Basically a "chase" for my plates! I will hold them all together with Blue masking tape so that I can use with all my other plates also.

So here is my idea. I will make a standard "chase" for my woodblocks to go on the bed of the press. I will use filler blocks (furniture) to fill the gap where the block is not filling the "hole".

Well my trial run on Saturday worked out really well. The only issue that I had was that I tried to standardize the "chase" by using a filler piece of MDF between the horizontal rails. Not good. I ended up with paper embossing thats really noticeable. Going to cut some custom pieces to fit two of my whale blocks. Need to noodle that some more.

Chase on the bed of the press ready to get the inked block. Note that the rubber offset mat is under the roll and on top of the Chase. Thus no hopping on and off the plate and it can not push the paper off the plate.

Hey that worked well but the filler piece really embossed the paper with a noticeable line.

So with some experimentation I got it right. So with the custom vertical rails made for each block and the addition of the thinnest felt blanket. Perfect impression... but still got some paper creep and got some marks on the back side of the paper. Hmmm.

So I held the rubber sheet and the felt up in the air as the bed moved under the rollers and bingo! No marks on the last part of the paper to move under the rollers. 

This will make doing an edition of 50 prints MUCH easier and with not much erasing of bad ink marks needed. 

So hanging in my studio drying are the 12 prints that I got done on Monday.

Video of the powered etching press at Genesee Center For the Arts that I'm using here in Rochester, NY.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Mother and Calf - Second Proof

OK! Cleaned up some lines and lightened the waves above the calf and need to do some more work but .. third time will be surly be the charm. Whale and Calf. 13 x 19.25 inches.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Mother and Calf. First proof.

Inked block on the press and then the first proof. Whale and Calf. 13 x 19.25 inches.

More snow and more whales.

Here are some more whale prints that I've been working on the last couple of weeks.
I didn't like the lines on the bigger whale so I used Kwik Wood to fill in the lines and then recarved them. Still not happy but since I have done this whale over 3 times now..... I may just trash it and start it over from scratch
Third and final proof of "Humpback Whale" 12x19 inches. Its a keeper!
Whale and Calf. 13 x 19.25 inches - Raw Block - first state.
And now to do a proof of the above plate to see if I've got it right!

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Whale Tail

First proof of "Whale Tail" Woodblock print 19x12 inches.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Humpback Whales

Since I'm freezing my butt off here in Rochester this week I decided to revisit our trip to Hawaii last year at this time.

Here is the second state of "Mother and Child".

Mother and Child - woodblock - 12 x 18 inches