Monday, July 10, 2017

Proofing...and back to the carving board!


Never was much of a "proofer" until I started wood engraving, Corian engraving included. In standard woodcuts I tint the block and carve away and basically what you see is what you get with some little details having to be tweaked here and there.
When engraving, however, it is increasingly difficult to tell what a block will print like. Hopefully, I have trained myself to carve darker than I want the end print to be. If it is lighter, that means too much has been carved and...well, I'm stuck with it!

The block carved at last! Or maybe not,
three close ups follow
Age brings patience in art, I think. So here are the first proofs and a bunch of stuff to clean up, lighten up, brighten up, enhance and so on. As usual, I printed the last proof on clear mylar so that I can reverse and have an exact copy of my block; if you have been paying attention (ha!), you know what I mean. If not, dig through my blog and search for tricks and tips.

Proofs were pulled with my ball bearing baren (say that three times fast), which is an awesome tool with huge power to pull prints by hand. Takes almost no pressure, stays very flat, does not rip the paper and makes a nice whirl whirl sound as it pulls a print ("it" pulls a print driven my hand, that is). Corian gives up the ink very easily so very little is needed to get nice blacks and lots of detail, I'm using Gamblin black.

Back to carving, sky needs cleaning up, areas need light, road needs work, trees need detail, river needs cleaning...back to the carving board!

Proofs get darker and darker,
patience is key to good blacks without
gumming up the fine details

The proof on Mylar, gets reversed to mimic the block

Proof on newsprint (always so warm and cozy)
and the Mylar reversed

The block after cleanup, never again will it look
so beautiful as after the first carving..sigh

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