18 July 2005

Study #3 - Listening Buddha

Here's the third and probably last in my series of small 4" x 6" print studies of the Kamakura Daibutsu statue. I call it "Listening Buddha." It shows the statue's right ear and his cheek viewed against the sky. I love to crop in very closely on a subject almost to the point of abstraction. My regular illustration clients rarely allow me to do this, as they want an easily-recognizable "quick read" image. This is not a quick read. Perhaps it's the weakest of the three designs for that reason, but I like it and the fun thing about this exploration into woodblock printing is that I'm doing it just to please myself!

Here's block #1, the lightest tones for the statue's ear and cheek:

Listening Buddha 1

And here's the second block which defines the sky area:

Listening Buddha 2

1 comment:

tom said...

Hi Annie,

By coincidence, I have been struggling with a blue sky today. I find that different types of blue pigment have very different properties. For an even sky blue I have been using a modern synthetic powder. A mere speck dissolved in alcohol and gum arabic makes a beautiful pale blue. I find I do need three impresions to get an even tone. The trick is to have the paper at the right moisture level for each impression. Lay the prints out in overlapping stacks, gather them up, rearrange them - till you get them back to that silky feel. they should rattle just slightly as you go to print. I often find myself waving a print around to dry it a little before printing. Even 10 seconds can make all the difference.

I look forward to the next block.