Today's postings

  1. [Baren 24967] Re: W Aust Exhibition (Mike Lyon)
  2. [Baren 24968] Woodcuts & Wood engraving in the class room (FurryPressII #
  3. [Baren 24969] Re: Woodcuts & Wood engraving in the class room (FurryPressII #
  4. [Baren 24970] woodblock, hanga, expense, etc. (Margaret Szvetecz)
  5. [Baren 24971] That ^^($(% Print (Dan Dew)
  6. [Baren 24972] Re: That ^^($(% Print (Barbara Mason)
  7. [Baren 24973] Re: That ^^($(% Print (Daniel Dew)
  8. [Baren 24974] Re: That ^^($(% Print ("Carol Myers")
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Message 1
From: Mike Lyon
Date: Sun, 02 May 2004 10:27:25 -0500
Subject: [Baren 24967] Re: W Aust Exhibition
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Sharri wrote:
>One of the reasons Hanga is not a core curriculum course in printmaking, I
>believe, is the ungodly expense to get one set up with all the proper
>tools. The Western technique is so inexpensive in comparison. If we
>could convince instructors that they could substitute other less expensive
>tools, or some enterprising younger than I person would manufacture some
>student grade products/tools, maybe we could make some headway.

You mean that you think that because each student would probably acquire
his own set of carving tools, brushes and baren to print Japanese technique
(and can easily port the print shop to their kitchen table at home, or
wherever and forever) that the overall cost over years is greater than all
students sharing the ungodly expense of a single decent press (or even more
for several), a bunch of communal brayers and rollers, drying racks,
carving tools? But you can only use these in the print room when it's your

I vote for moku-hanga as the MUCH more cost effective! I don't think that
expense is the main reason hanga isn't part of our Western core curriculum
-- it's just a general western ignorance of the application of Japanese
technique and a dearth of trained (cross trained?) instructors... But
that'll change, that'll change... all things do!

-- Mike

Mike Lyon
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Message 2
From: FurryPressII #
Date: Sun, 2 May 2004 11:51:25 EDT
Subject: [Baren 24968] Woodcuts & Wood engraving in the class room
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I don't think it is cost one way or the other that has an effect on wood cuts
being taught in university art departments. The cost of printing supplies
in either western or Japanese method all depends on the printer as you can
find ways to spend money in either printing method and is not the reason eather
method is not pushed. I have found that most printmaking teachers in
univeristy art dept. are eather etchers or litho people. Most are not relief printers
and do not really understand relief beyond lino in any case. I don't think
it has anything to do with being western -- mostly it has to do with what the
teacher is interested in. When i was a t.a. i remember the prof telling the
students to get pine or regular plywood to do wood cuts and of course when the students
were unhappy with the results, that was the last time they tried relief
printing. You should have seen the looks on some of their faces when they saw what i
was working on and which wood i was using. They all asked me how i was able
to get all the detail in my prints as well as why i did not use the etching
press to print wood cuts. Well there was a perfectly working vandercook in the
print shop but i was not to teach the begining classes how to use it. I think
the reason was that the prof did not know how to use it.

john center
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Message 3
From: FurryPressII #
Date: Sun, 2 May 2004 11:53:53 EDT
Subject: [Baren 24969] Re: Woodcuts & Wood engraving in the class room
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Wood engraving is not taught at all. so wood engravers are mostly outsider
artists? lol
john c.
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Message 4
From: Margaret Szvetecz
Date: Sun, 2 May 2004 10:16:44 -0700 (GMT-07:00)
Subject: [Baren 24970] woodblock, hanga, expense, etc.
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When I was studying printmaking at the University of Texas at Austin, very, very few people (maybe two?) were doing woodblock printmaking of any kind, most probably because none of the profs or grad assistants were interested in woodblock printmaking--European tradition or hanga.

When I was studying printmaking at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, one of the graduate assistants in printmaking offered a woodblock printmaking class (European tradition), mostly because he had an interest in teaching it. I don't know if the school continued to offer the class after I left.

It seems to me that if a faculty member (or a well-liked graduate assistant) is particularly interested in woodblock printmaking, then the department will offer one or more classes in the topic. However (as John Center said), most printmaking faculty members are either intaglio people or lithographers.

I also don't think considerations about the expense an individual might incur in a personal studio setup have much to do with whether or not a type of printmaking class is offered in a college or unversity setting. I took classes in intaglio and lithography, and it sure would be expensive for me to set up a home studio to do those types of printmaking.

Obviously doing hanga using the very best paper and tools is expensive, but doing any kind of printmaking using the very best paper and tools is always expensive--to say nothing about equipment.

Margaret Szvetecz
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Message 5
From: Dan Dew
Date: Sun, 02 May 2004 13:16:24 -0400
Subject: [Baren 24971] That ^^($(% Print
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For anyone offended by curse words or negative comments, delete this now!

I have almost finished my printing for exchange #20, which I am thinking of
titling "The Block From Hell". Nothing has worked right. The ink, the
paper, the block, nothing. What originally started as a multi color
reduction block print has turned into a one color print. Still very nice
and I am proud of it, but still.......

Oh well, maybe I can fix it at a later date.

Only 10 more to print, then dry and off in the mail.

d. dew
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Message 6
From: Barbara Mason
Date: Mon, 3 May 2004 00:37:31 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: [Baren 24972] Re: That ^^($(% Print
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I am so three block print is now a two block print, but drying so finally I can breathe a sigh of relief! Why do we do this to ourselves???? Maybe we should trick ourselves into thinking the deadlines are a month before they are or something. I hate to think all artists are just always under the gun but it seems we are.
Best to all,
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Message 7
From: Daniel Dew
Date: Mon, 3 May 2004 08:05:05 -0400
Subject: [Baren 24973] Re: That ^^($(% Print
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That's what ticks me off the most! I had the block completed within
the first two weeks of sign-up!
First color was laid down the next night, all was going so well. The
problems started with the second color. First it was going on too dark
and/ or filling in. Then the image started moving around (actually my
mistake in carving away ALL the background, leaving the image floating,
lino with no block).
So, the roller kept getting ink where I didn't want it and the paper
kept moving enough to screw up registration. I thought, add tack, that
will work! Nope, image stuck but the fine lines filled in.
Day after day, experimenting to save a reduction print. I started with
50 prints, hoping to use 31 for the exchange and sell the rest. By the
time I corrected the problems, I had 22 prints left for the reduction!
Drats, now what?
So, created a shield of cardboard for the rolling up, so the ink would
go only where I wanted it. Then created a shield for the printing
process so that the paper would stay where I wanted it, even had to
resort to taping down the top and bottom of the paper to make it stay
All for a one color print.

Come on now, I can't be the only one with a horror story. It would
make me feel better if others would chime in with theirs. If not, then
I am going to feel like the only goofball in here.

d. dew
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Message 8
From: "Carol Myers"
Date: Mon, 3 May 2004 07:46:25 -0500
Subject: [Baren 24974] Re: That ^^($(% Print
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Dan and Barbara,
I am so glad to hear that I am not the only one to have printing problems! Here I thought it was just my lack of experience with woodblock.

My horror story, however, was a chest virus that left me so sore that I couldn't even think about printing. But the prints are now headed to the post office, so there was a happy ending.

On a technical note, I've been using foam sheets that I find at Micheals or the fabric store, to mask as I roll the ink up, or to keep the paper from wrinkling when printing. Great stuff, and easily cut.

Looking forward to seeing everyone's prints (even the ones from hell!)

Happy printing,
Carol Myers