Wednesday, 20 July 2022

Mokuhanga mayhem

 


Skelligs Setting Sun
original Japanese Woodblock print
by Teresa Newham

 I've been continuing my exploration of Japanese Woodblock (mokuhanga), using the design for my Skelligs Golden Light linocut.  I reduced the size of the image to fit the blocks for this multi block process and cut four of them. I also cut the registration marks (kentou) with a chisel for the first time, and hoped they would fit.


adapting and cutting the design, including the kentou
© Teresa Newham


The trial prints on proof paper got me back into the swing of things, but I didn't like any of the colours, the birds didn't work and the blocks needed some tidying.  The registration on one of the blocks was slightly out but I was confident that I could correct that during printing, as long as I remembered . . . 


early colour trials
© Teresa Newham

The materials and method for Japanese woodblock are quite unlike anything else I have done, and even just thinking about how I might move forward with the design was useful.  The blocks can be used again and again with different colour combinations - the possibilities are endless.


studio set-up for Japanese Woodblock 
© Teresa Newham


I was far happier with my next attempt, and progressed to making prints on Shiramine Japanese washi paper from the Awagami Factory in Japan.  The paper was probably a little too wet, as the prints were softer than I'd intended, but as I was after a misty effect that didn't matter too much.


Skelligs Misty Blue
original Japanese Woodblock print
by Teresa Newham

I decided to make another version using just three of the blocks, and did two more colour trials.  One was a sunset based on one of my photos, and the other a more stormy scene reminiscent of my earlier linocut.  I preferred the sunset but when I posted the proof prints on social media my followers chose the storm as their favourite!


baren, inking brushes and colour mixes
© Teresa Newham


What else could I do but print them both? I managed this in the same print session, which was a challenge but also great fun.  Skelligs Stormy Skies is below, and Skelligs Setting Sun is at the top of this post.  Which one do you like the best?


Skelligs Stormy Skies
original Japanese Woodblock print
by Teresa Newham





Wednesday, 6 July 2022

Chatting at Childwickbury

 


the entrance to the Childwickbury stable block
© Teresa Newham

This year's Childwickbury Arts Fair was an ideal way to enjoy all kinds of art in an open air setting.  Everything was centred on the stable block as usual, with various groups of tents in front and behind containing work by a huge variety of artists and makers - over fifty in all.


Artists and art displays (clockwise from top left):
Jenny Wheatley, Ali Yanya, Polly Hobbs, Nagihan Seymour
© Teresa Newham

Some of those taking part were regulars - or at least, I had seen some of their work before; others were completely new to me.  I wandered around taking photos of the pieces which I particularly liked, and even managed to snap my own reflection in one of the sculptures..


Sculpture by Christian Funnell, Hazel Godfrey, Jankowski Weathervanes
(clockwise from top left)
© Teresa Newham

I always enjoy the colourful array of flowers and brightly dressed mannequins.  Childwickbury is a real lesson in how to present even quite boring information in an interesting way which makes you smile!


colourful Childwickbury flowers and mannequins
© Teresa Newham

I chatted to some of the artists who I knew or who I had met before, including Laura Boswell who was demonstrating lino cutting and kindly let me take a photo.  The printmakers' section is my favourite place at the fair - I love studying the various styles and techniques. In fact I'm looking forward to next year already . . .


printmakers including Tessa Pearson (top left) and Laura Boswell (top right)
© Teresa Newham