I am working with another printmaker on a collaboration piece, actually two. She starts one and I add to it and then she prints, and I start one, she adds to it and then I print. Then a bunch of us exchange prints. Kind of cool. I have reported before that I'm doing a puzzle print and you can see the progress of all of us here:
Things are quietly moving along with our happy creation. My partner in printmaking and I chose to do something along the lines of the dichotomy between rural and urban, generally speaking.
Lynn lives on the outskirts of the city and enjoys rural views from her urban digs. Maria lives smack in the middle of the city (formerly the outskirts!) in an acre with plenty of "elbow room" between neighbors, neatly simulating a tiny rural environment.
Anyhow, Lynn is in possession of my puzzle blocks and I am about done carving my part on my own block, plus the four pieces. I might do a color background on the...er, background, but that is to be decided.
In the meantime, I received Lynn's block, neatly carved with a variety of interesting images and shapes.
This is a proof of the block, with my "blank canvas" at the bottom. I really liked the roof shapes and the shape of the vegetation-divider in the middle of the image, so I decided to replicate them.
Since I don't often sketch except right on the block, I had to revise the way I work. I took this very picture into Photoshop and proceeded to doodle on the bottom with my trusty graphic tablet pen.
I wanted those very interesting shapes to tie in my design and Lynn's so I simply copied and pasted some of her shapes with some stretching and replicating and mirror imaging and all that is possible with PS.
I find that looking at images very small on the computer screen helps balance compositions and blacks and whites. Also help in color schemes.
Lynn's rooftops became my mountains, the little house in the middle of the desert was "stolen" from Lynn's housing complex, the horses shrunk to fit the scale, and the bushes flipped and distorted to fill in the foreground and balance the blacks.
After a few days of looking at the thing, I came up with three very close versions of what I wanted to do. Since Lynn chose to depict the urban environment with a little "rurality" for contrast, I chose to do just the opposite. Here are my sketches, you can play "find the differences" if you like. We decided on No.3 and I'm carving today as soon as I get off this chair.
The carving begins!