Hi Line is a woodcut layered with three photo-intaglios, 24”x18” on cotton rag paper
My first attempt at a 4-color photo-intaglio, “Snow Shadows,” had technical problems with the black plate last year. So I improvised and made it a 2-color plate with red and black(using the cyan plate for the black ink). This year, I re-visited the image and exposed another black plate to reprinted the image again, now as a 4-color image. The result is a richer print, with warm yellows in the reflected light, and cooler shadows in the foreground.
My graduate thesis focused on combining various printmaking mediums, by layering the prints, and incorporating digitally-manipulated photographs. The image above, of Holmes Oval, began as a tucshe ink wash painting on mylar, that was exposed onto a photo-sensitive plate, to be inked and printed as the first layer. However, the photo process had washed out the light textures and so I added pastels to give it the depth it needed.
It was about this time that I had begun experimenting with collagraphs and I decided to create a collagraph of Holmes Oval and try printing the tusche wash intaglio on top of the collagraph. The resulting print is below, which actually became quite ominous, with the netting in the sky and the woven threads of fabric moving across the street and lawns. The trees also take on a tangled web of threads and the houses are in the deep shadows of textured surfaces below. This is a monoprint, due to the changing nature of the fabric surfaces and the inconsistent wiping of various colors in the collagraph layer.
The third image in this post is “Sixth Avenue” which began as a woodcut, on which I glued fabrics and netting again. But this time, I took a photo of the first print of the collagraph, and then subtracted the textures from a photograph of Sixth Avenue. The result is a relationship between the two images, which are now layered on top of each other.
24×18 Photo-Intaglio print of a manipulated photo that I took in winter of 2015 in Central Park.
I was trying to capture the twisted textures of the trees, contrasting the distant urban skyline, but the photo process filled in the trees as a flat black, and the emphasis is now on the dramatic sky contrasting the exciting weave of shadows on the walkway. As usual, printmaking doesn’t always do what I expect but I do like this image in the end.
I redid the plate, with an ochre/sienna ink, and layered it with a second plate, created from a different photo, after using the curves tool in photoshop to isolate the blacks. I also gave the 2nd plate a longer exposure to be sure the details in the black would print. This new image captures the sky and light areas of the photo with the first yellow plate, and the rich textures are captured on the black plate.
I plan to experiment further with this image in the spring of 2016
10″ x 8″ Mezzotint and drypoint from copper plate. The mezzotint rocker took days to create a velvety black, into which I burnished to lighten areas, and then use the diamond-tipped tool to scratch in the dark lines and control the darks. I like the way some patterns of the lines remain from the mezzotint rocking. It reminds me of a Hopper etching I saw once of a dark street corner, that had lots of cross-hatching, as the rocker creates.
Its so time consuming, that its no wonder the mezzotint process is regarded an elitist print technique. Beginning in the middle of seventeenth century, it was mastered by artists such as Durer and Escher.