Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Our First Group Discussion

Monotypes were due yesterday at 3:15, providing about an hour at the end of class for discussion in regard to where the prints were and what needed to be done still. I'll have some examples to post sometime on Friday. There were several that were very well executed and crafted and that took advantage of the full concept of color separation, and there were some that were short of the last one or two runs of colors or neutrals to resolve the image. I'm hopeful they'll be in a better place by the extended deadline of Friday at 10:00 a.m.

Resolving the impressions may involve techniques and methods that don't require the press. Some of the images may be better resolved with some hand work, drawing and/or painting. Afterall, it is a monotype, a one-of-a-kind impression. Often called the "painterly" print medium. Troy's resolution to his "kind of a cross" image was to go additive rather than sustaining the reductive process, allowing him to expand his imagination. This process merges printmaking, drawing, and painting, and can often do so with rich and exciting works. After printing, the image can be reworked to some extent using various types of media. However, it's a good idea to think about what that media is, or will be, since you're working on a oil based surface. Don't lose the integrity of the print by using it as simply a base for drawing or painting, but rather exercise your creativity to effectively blend those approaches.

This project stretched over twelve days, more than adequate time to print three colors, four if needed. That length of time actually could have yielded a small series of impressions, like Daniel is starting to explore. However, I can fully understand the intimidation factor that comes with a first semester printmaking student who comes in to work and isn't quite sure if they know how to mix the inks, or pull an impression on the press. That's why technical journals are so important. Of course, if you have a technical journal with no technical notes, it's a tough road working in the shop during non-class hours. So let's see if we can get our journals up-to-date on what we've covered so that the shop starts to experience more frequent activity than just Monday and Wednesday afternoons.

See you in the shop.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Another Holiday! No Classes!!

Monday, January 18, is the holiday to celebrate Martin Luther King's birthday, although he was actually born on January 15, which is Friday. Federal law (5 U.S.C.6103) established that MLK's birthday be celebrated this year (2010) as a National Holiday on the 18th, and every year on the third Monday of January. However, it's interesting that the law was established for federal employees. Most federal employees work on a Monday through Friday schedule. For those employees, when a holiday falls on a non-work day, Saturday or Sunday, the holiday usually is observed on Monday (if the holiday falls on Sunday) or Friday (if the holiday falls on Saturday).

It's weird, if it falls on Friday it seems to me that that is a work day, not a non-work day, so why is MLK's birthday celebrated on the third Monday of January instead of this Friday, a work day, then we could at least have printmaking class on Monday. Last year, 2009, MLK's birthday was on Thursday the 15th, but celebrated on Monday the 21st, since, again, it was the third Monday of the month....go figure. If you'd like to celebrate MLK's birthday in the printshop, let me know and I'll bring the cake.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Beginning a New Semester

Spring classes start on Monday. I like the optimism of the "spring" semester, although it's freezing today, somewhere around 50 below zero. We have a mixed bag in the studio this semester, 11 beginning students, three in 300 level, one in 400 level, and one BFA. We'll also have both etching presses and, I hope, both litho presses running this semester, so there will be lots of printing fun!!! Those of you in the S240 group, if you get the chance to get any of your supplies by Monday, bring your scraper and burnisher with you. If not, we'll get into that on Wednesday. See you Monday at 1:15.