More paddle fans, while it’s still hot! I’m making these for a new local “Climate Action Coalition.” There’s going to be another layer, of leaf veins and the name of the group and then, I’ll fold them over and glue them with the handle. These are for an event in a few weeks. This tulip poplar leaf block is from a project I never quite finished a few years ago, but it’s perfect for this application–the group is promoting the health of the mountains where I’m living right now and tulip poplars are abundant here, and their leaves are truly unique and aesthetically interesting. I think they’re a good motif for the cause and provide a lot of graphic possibilities. Also, I think it’s a great poster, as is! ha!
leaf fan detail
Here’s the layer of leaf veins–I think it’ll look cute when it’s folded over and the stick handle suggests a larger vein. I still have to fit the org’s name on here.
These are samples of designs I had printed to fabric last year, both created from prints I did. The one on the left was based on a monotype and the one on the right was based on a reduction cut letterpress print. (I used the blue fabric to cover chair cushions on my chair project last year; I called it “Shop Class.”) I photographed the prints for digital files and then used the fabric printing service, “Spoonflower” to print out yardage. The images above are what the samples looked like when I ordered. (I really like the results, but because I could afford to only get a yard of each, I haven’t found anything to do with the fabric, beyond the cushion cover.)
I got to lead a book binding class this last weekend and it was a bunch of fun! I hadn’t done much book-making for some time, so I introduced a few fairly basic styles that can be done at home with no special equipment and with very accessible, inexpensive materials. The participants were game and we all accomplished quite a bit! I introduced them to the proof press, too, so we added another realm of possibilities to the pursuit. And, I got use a lot of my old prints. So, all in all, the participants got a good taste of book art and I got a good reminder of what fun book-making can be and of its potential for art-creation. A good experience on a beautiful weekend!
I spent a bunch of time in the printshop yesterday (yay!) and finished up the printing on my next set of paddle fans, “Pyramid of Power.” I made them with cutoffs from the local university’s print shop; the shop is always happy to give stuff away rather than to pulp it. This coated card stock works great for fanning and picked up the ink pretty well. Clearly, the type I have access to is pretty beat up, but it’s working well for my intent. I’m now looking for some American flag stickers to put in the lower right hand corner to fill that empty space. These are for the Fourth of July, but are also for every day that citizens need encouragement to believe that we have what it takes to make the nation of our ideals.
Hey, here are a couple of t-shirts from one of the participants in the silkscreen t-shirt sesh I held the other day… It was good fun and everyone there seemed to learn something edifying. It was rewarding to see everyone find something that they were interested in trying, and the results, well, they speak for themselves!
This is the image I practiced with yesterday on the proof press. The one on the left is good (!) and was what I was going for. But, as the other two prints show, I still need more practice: The middle one isn’t the worst one I did, but I think a sloppy insert to the clamp before rolling skewed it just enough to preclude a clean print. The one on the right was even more sloppy, but I trimmed off the edges so some of the ‘slide’ is gone and I think is less obvious. It’ll be a postcard, so that’s okay. Then, since I had the ink on the rollers, I made a couple of postcards:
This image (which is blurry–I’ll replace it soon) is of my new curtain fabric; I dug out an old lino I’d used for a reduction cut handprint, and inked it up. I started by printing this fabric on the press, but it was just too much fabric and I started running out of time, so I just went ahead and printed it by hand (which still took some time, actually) and got adequate-plus results. I’ll run them up by the end of this long weekend, and they’ll be ready to brighten up the bedroom for the new week!
I had a few extra minutes in the printshop yesterday and the type on the bed was for the First Amendment paddle fan I’m working on, so I quickly dug around for a few large letters and some cut-offs from the local university’s copy shop and got to it! It took a bit of time adjusting the spacing, but I find that, just a couple of weeks back in the shop, I’m getting faster and more accurate, comfortably.
I’ve spent a few hours in the print shop of a local community college and have been, slowly, getting back into the print groove…It’s a very different feel from my woodworking classroom and it’s a real relief to be in a bright, spacious and sawdust-free workspace. It still takes a lot of energy and focus, but the reward is almost immediate and the ink smells like home.
printmaking classroom, press furniture, Challenger letterpresses, Cherokee syllabary type