13 August 2013

Cherry Blossom


White line reduction woodblock print
5" x 7" (12.7 x 17.8 cm) image on Echizen Kozo paper
edition: 15

This is the final state of the reduction white line grid print I worked on last week. It’s not what I envisioned or expected, but there are a lot of things I really like about it.

I like the intense emboss.
I like the colors.
I thoroughly enjoyed the process, from start to finish.
I like that it looks like cross stitch.
I like that you can’t quite tell what it is.
I like that it looks different at various sizes (or offline, from various distances).

This whole thing started as a sort of a joke. I was visiting my mother a couple of weeks ago and we were talking about how difficult it is to sell my art. My mother is convinced that it's because of my subject matter, which is probably true. So I quipped, “Yeah, you're right. I should probably make some prints of flowers.” My mom, needless to say, thought it was a great idea and that I would sell a lot of them.

Later that day I got an email from Zea Mays Print Studio about their annual ‘Print Fair North’ and on the heels of that conversation with my mother I had a little light bulb moment. Last year at the Print Fair it was my smaller one-off prints that sold well. Why not make small prints specifically for the Print Fair? And why not test my mom’s theory and make prints of flowers?

So I looked at all the photos I’ve taken of flowers over the years to see if I had any material to work with. I have to admit I’m not a very good photographer, but I do have a lot of flower photos. Then I became daunted. I thought about all of the great woodblock artists who do or have done flowers. The Print Fair is in November, just three months away. I don't have time to become a great printer of florals. Maybe stylized floral patterns would be a good approach for me? I needed to find some approach to working with my photos that felt like it was do-able and would hold my interest. I'm not quite sure how it came to me, but I picked one of the photos, cropped it, played with the colors a little in Photoshop, blurred the heck out of it and put a grid over it.

Here's what I was working from:

I enjoyed the process, so I plan to do a few more of these and see if I can get something happening. Or not. We'll see. Learning new things is never a waste of time.


Celia Hart said...

It will be interesting to see if your new print sells well - I like the extreme pixelated look and the out of focus feel. It also had a scientific feel which would work well in a modern interior.
C xx

Stuart Brocklehurst said...

I've given up trying to figure out what will sell and what doesn't. Most of the prints that I thought would fly off the walls are still in the studio. Other editions that I was less confident in, I could have sold twice over!

I really like the print.

Annie B said...

Thanks Stuart. It's a mystery, isn't it? I should give up trying to figure out what will sell also...