photograph of today's progress at the easel
The first paper-doll-chain painting sat on the floor in front of me while I worked on this new one. They may hang together someday, somewhere - so I wanted to paint the second one in reponse to the first.
Also, in the photograph, you can see the two lateral threads I used to keep the dolls from spinning. I usually only need one, and a bit of tape, but this model was so wispy it took two. The dolls are sandwiched between them. The heating vent, out of the photo and above the easel, was kept closed to keep the air currents from bouncing the dolls around. The light source (a floor lamp) is behind the wet canvas - you can see its base peeking around.
Unmade Bed, oil on canvas mounted on board, 14 x 19 inches, 2005
There's a blank canvas on the easel - and the paper-doll chain has assumed a different pose.
While moving forward with a new painting, I've been looking back in time for inspiration to make another print.
I keep coming back to this Unmade Bed. The colors in the white mussed-up sheets fascinated me at the time I painted it. How do I convey that feeling in black and white? I'd also like to dig deeper into the idea of awareness by absence of the human form. I like how narrative that feels.
There's a lot of visual information here to fit into a 4 x 6 inch piece of linoleum. This print may turn out to be a study for yet a larger print - we'll see.
a photograph of my first e-commerce effort
Awhile back, I offered a small edition of prints to my readers here. It was wonderful connecting with those of you who responded - and knowing my work was going to good homes. I would love for more of my prints to go out into the world and have recently started looking into other ways of making that happen.
The booklet you see in the photo is something I put together to answer questions I was getting regarding my certificate of authenticity. Inside is a short description of my printmaking process, the materials and tools used and brief explanations of some printmaking terms. The certificate takes up the entire last page. It's been revised a bit from the one posted two posts ago but is essentially the same. And the cover, as you see, has an image of the inked, dryed and drilled matrix - my symbol, now, for moving on.
certificate of authenticity for Bananas print
I was struck by the last line in this certificate of authenticity. (The wording came from a template I found online here.) At first, the idea of limiting an edition by taking some kind of physical action seemed so final. But actions like this can also be very liberating. So - with drill in hand - and a 3/8 inch spade bit in the drill - I freed myself.
cancelled matrix for Bananas print
In addition to drilling a hole completely through the matrix, I've left the last inking to dry. Now, besides ensuring the finite nature of the edition, I can decorate my walls with these printmaking remnants. In free moments, I can look at them - with their final - and forever - inking.
Pitcher, water-based ink on Fabriano paper, image: 6 x 4 inches, paper: 8 x 6 inches
Today, I pulled this new print (based on a previous oil painting) - while finding time to finish up a new painting (one of a paper doll chain dangling by a thread.) This back and forth, from printmaking to painting, and from old to new, is harried but satisfying. March feels fertile.
a scan of a rough sketch for a paper-doll-chain template . . .
I started, this morning, to make a model for a new stillife painting - a paper doll chain. The winning sketch is the doughboy you see directly above. It took me a few drafts to get there - and to get the mannequin out of my system. It turns out, with the folds and the iterations, you really do need to keep things extremely simple and iconic - and fat. The folds in the chain reduce the form so there needs to be plenty of heft to begin with.
My first attempts, multiples on the mannequin form (above top), were hilarious. The cute little doughboy, on the other hand, produced a much more contemplative feel when multiplied and dangled by a thread.
Full Circle, oils on paper (an assemblage of 28), 27.75 x 33 inches
On a previous post, in the midst of assembling this piece, Marc kindly commented that I "earned March." I'm fairly certain this new month would've still arrived had I not painted all of these eggs. But I think he hit on an interesting truth. The ritual and discipline involved in completing this piece helped me measure time. It may also have made it easier for me to imagine I was earning March and everything it promises. Once in a while, once a year, perhaps, we may all need to imagine we have more control over things than we really do. Once a year, we need to simply make our ways to spring.
I have freshly-prepared-larger canvases on hand - along with pent up desire and ideas. Earned or not, March is here - ready or not, I'm back to the easel. Happy March to you all!