Today's postings

  1. [Baren 37738] Precious art object vs. mass communication or both (Dan Allegrucci)
  2. [Baren 37739] More about materials (ArtfulCarol #
  3. [Baren 37740] Re: More about materials (Mary Kuster)
  4. [Baren 37741] Re: SSNW08 (bill thorn)
  5. [Baren 37742] Re: SSNW08 (Charles Morgan)
  6. [Baren 37743] Re: SSNW08 (Diane Cutter)
  7. [Baren 37744] Baren Member blogs: Update Notification (Blog Manager)
Member image

Message 1
From: Dan Allegrucci
Date: Fri, 26 Dec 2008 13:58:33 GMT
Subject: [Baren 37738] Precious art object vs. mass communication or both
Send Message: To this poster

In the case of Cannonball Press printing on unsized canvas: I think those guys are on the fence between the traditions of the print as poster or broadside or other form of mass communication, and the print as precious art object. At the show I saw, all the prints on the wall were priced at $20 and included work by artisits that sell their other prints in the thousands. Of course the huge woodcuts on canvas are like $20,000. I think they are trying to have the best of both worlds - between the high brow and low brow.

Also, didn't european painters in the late 1800s discover japanese woodcuts as packing material for other imported goods? Not sure if that is true, but I always thought that anecdote was funny now that the most of us regard the print as a precious art object. Just my $.02.

Dan Allegrucci
Member image

Message 2
From: ArtfulCarol #
Date: Fri, 26 Dec 2008 20:36:58 GMT
Subject: [Baren 37739] More about materials
Send Message: To this poster

I use archival, but I must tell of my experiences.

I have met with numerous museum curators and some of them have acquired my
art. Not once did any ask me what paper I use, or questions about any
materials. Several have turned the paper over to look at the back, but I don't
know what they were looking for. I find it humorous.
The best response was "You don't have to tell us how you do it. We want it"
These people were interested in the image and/or the idea behind it.

A New York Museum curator was asked a question about archival materials at a
lecture I attended. Her response was that she is not concerned in her
choices.. The archival department takes care of archival issues.

As far as I know my work has lasted.
Happy Holidays and
Never Never Quit. -- W. Churchill
Carol Lyons
Irvington, NY
Member image

Message 3
From: Mary Kuster
Date: Fri, 26 Dec 2008 21:02:50 GMT
Subject: [Baren 37740] Re: More about materials
Send Message: To this poster

As a gallery director, I place an emphasis on archival materials. I
encourage and promote archival quality. When I get an artist that
paints on cardboard, I immediately launch into my lecture. If I get a
digital artist I always ask what materials they are using. I always ask
what materials were used in framing. This past year I had an excellent
oil painter in the gallery, but his canvas came in with black electrical
tape on the edges - no frames. But I hung his work, based on the
images. The tape started to fall off before the show came down,
expensive paintings with bad presentation.

I don't reject an artist using inferior materials, but I want my buyer
to understand what they are getting.

My responsibility is to both the artist and the buyer. If I'm going to
build a base of art buyers, they need to know that I have credibility
and know what I'm doing. I do this by knowing the art, artist and buyer
and selling a good product. Many artists want to make art to because it
makes them feel good or are compelled to make art, but if you are going
to be a business, you must create quality work using quality materials
( insert pride). If I have two identical works, one on cardboard and
one on canvas, guess which one will have a higher price?

But it boils down to each artist who must decide what kind of impression
they want to leave with the client.
Member image

Message 4
From: bill thorn
Date: Fri, 26 Dec 2008 22:23:01 GMT
Subject: [Baren 37741] Re: SSNW08
Send Message: To this poster

>Hello Josephine,

>It is simply not true that only Bareners participate, as you well know. And you are also fully aware of the history of this exchange. If you have any real questions, just email me off list.

>Cheers ....... Charles"

The name's Bill.


Which of these people are NOT Baren members?

1. Angela Walker2. Mellissa Read-Devine3. Oscar Bearinger4. Carole Carroll5. Anthony Woodward 6. Sharen Linder7. George Jarvis8. Carol Chapel9. Diane Cutter10. Tina Moore11. Barbara Carr12. AEleen Frisch13. Guadalupe Victorica Reyes14. Mary Grassell15. Robert Simola16. Linden Langdon17. Ld Lawrence18. Barbara Zietchick19. Julia Wakefield20. Maria Arango21. Eli Griggs22. Johnny Appleby23. Jim Brodie24. Visa Arlington25. Rakesh Bani26. Mariana Bartolmeo Brookmueller27. Charles Morgan28. Barbara Patera

Who's "Josephine" and why do you think she is an expert on SSNW?

Why do you want to censor discussion of SSNW, aren't you anti-censorship?
If its OK to advertise the exchange on this list, then surely its ok to discuss it? Or am I missing something here?

Member image

Message 5
From: Charles Morgan
Date: Sat, 27 Dec 2008 01:28:53 GMT
Subject: [Baren 37742] Re: SSNW08
Send Message: To this poster

Hello Josephine,

You have used the pseudonym of Bill Thorn before, and we have had this discussion elsewhere before. It is a pity you seem to be afraid to use your own name. If you want to discuss SSNW matters, then email me privately, or move the discussion to SSNW.

Cheers .... Charles
Member image

Message 6
From: Diane Cutter
Date: Sat, 27 Dec 2008 01:58:50 GMT
Subject: [Baren 37743] Re: SSNW08
Send Message: To this poster


Good grief... This was an open invitation for Baren members to take part in yet another printmaking opportunity. I don't understand why it is necessary to discuss anything more here than just the invitation. I resent an examination of the various members, myself included, and whether or not we are Baren members. Please take this discussion elsewhere... We had enough of this type of discussion the last time there was a solstice exchange invitation. Give it a rest!


Digest Appendix

Postings made on [Baren] members' blogs
over the past 24 hours ...

Subject: [Seacoast in Winter - 3] : Hanshita distortions ...
Posted by: Dave Bull

Continued from [Seacoast in Winter - 2] | Starting point of the thread is [Seacoast in Winter]

Yes, about the circles ... it's kind of a long story.

When I was doing the printing for the Forest in Spring print (Chapter 11) some months ago, I had a very difficult time with the registration. I just couldn't get the tree trunks at the top of the print and the background to 'line up' properly, and the patterns on the forest floor also just wouldn't fit into place. When I lined up one side of the print, objects at the other side would be out of registration.

At first, I put this down to stretch in the paper due to the large number of impressions. When I printed the second batch of 100+ sheets I tried to be more careful with the paper condition, but still had the trouble. No matter how I shifted the paper in the registration marks, I was unable to get everything properly in place. The forest floor on the right half of the print is sharp, that on the left side is blurred, although I doubt that anybody would notice anything wrong by looking at their print.

A couple of month later, when doing the print of the moon (Chapter 3), registration was also trouble at first. I cut the registration marks _very carefully_, because I really wanted the smallest craters around the perimeter of the moon to be sharply delineated, but had a lot of trouble nonetheless. I was able to solve the problem that time, because the critical part of the design is in the _center_ of the paper, and the margins at right and left need no registration at all.

I was annoyed at myself for the carelessness again, put it down to over-confidence, and made a promise to be much more careful with the next print.

But when I did the first test printing on the next one - the River in Autumn (Chapter 4) - it was even worse. I had actually carved a keyblock for that design, but the registration was so bad - off by nearly two millimeters from side to side of the design, that I had to discard it. And I was only saved from total disaster by the fact that the circular black over-printing covers all the details at the far left and right edges of the design.

Something was clearly wrong, and I _finally_ realized that it wasn't me. At least I mean it wasn't just me being careless at printing time. The blocks themselves were inherently wrong. Something was spectacularly wrong with my hanshita preparation process.

The first three prints in the series - Chapters 1, 5, and 6 - had all be made in the traditional way, with the cutting of a key block first, then using that keyblock to print 'kyogo', colour separation sheets. I had no trouble with registration at all.

But these last three prints were not made that way. For these, I prepared the colour separations completely in Photoshop, printed them out with my laser printer, and pasted them onto blocks for carving. Photoshop couldn't be the problem, as everything there was controlled right down to the last pixel. The printer just spit out the correct data. But my pasting technique is very well honed after all these years - since some disasters very early on, many years ago, I have been rigourous with this.

Clearly though, _one_ of those three steps must be the problem, so this time, I tested and checked at every step, to try and isolate what was causing the trouble.

The Photoshop data was of course perfect, - each of the colour separations in the master file had (of course) exactly the same dimensions. I printed the first one out, and then grabbed a ruler to measure it.

Bingo! Problem located ...

Not only did the dimensions of the printout not match what was in the original file, the printout wasn't even perfectly rectangular. It was 'twisted' and distorted by around 1.5 millimetres across the length of the image. I printed another one. Also twisted, but in a slightly different way.

I have two laser printers here, a small Canon I use for my invoicing, and a larger A3 Epson I use for printing the pages of the books for this series. I experimented back and forth with both of them, and found the same thing. They both were producing distorted output. It seems that the paper twists and turns ever-so-slightly as it moves through the printer and there are always variations in the finished sheets.

No wonder I had had so much trouble with the registration on the previous three prints; they had been 'doomed' from the start, as the distortions were _carved_ into the blocks!

The solution seemed clear, just use a high-quality printer. I took the file down to my local printing company, and got them to run off a sample sheet on their room-sized giant digital machine. Same problem! It seems that this problem is inherent in copier technology. There is no way that the paper can go through all those rollers and twists and turns without the image becoming ever-so-slightly distorted, even on a top of the line professional machine.

So, what to do? Giving up the Photoshop separations, and returning to the traditional method of keyblock and kyogo would obviously work, but for this type of design, that was not a practical solution. I don't want outlines, and I _do_ want the textured surfaces. So I need a type of printer that will output the Photoshop data without distorting it.

I also have a large (A3) inkjet printer here, but have never used it for hanshita preparation. Everybody 'knows' that output from these printers is susceptible to smearing when it becomes wet, and if I used this printer, of course the details of the design would instantly become smeared and lost when the sheet was being pasted down onto the wood. And could the sprayed output have anywhere near the sharpness and clarity I had been getting with the 2400 dpi laser printer?

But I had never tested any of these things, so I tried a small sample. This printer is quite an expensive model, and uses what Epson calls 'pigmented inks'. When I tried pasting down the sample swatch, it didn't smear at all. As for sharpness, there are dozens of settings available in the printer driver, and I experimented until I found the one that gave the clearest output onto my hanshita paper.

And as an added bonus, this printer also has a slot in the back, so the paper can be fed through it without bending around any rollers at all.

And here - long story, I'm story - we get to the point of the circles, which by now, you can presumably guess. To minimize any possible chance for distortion in these sheets, I have broken up any wide areas of solid colour, to avoid having the liquid ink cause any swelling in those areas.

It all seems to work. The first test sheet showed no perceptible difference in dimensions from the original file, so I went ahead and ran off the whole batch, checked each one carefully, and then pasted them down ready for carving.

At this point there is nothing I can do to 'fix' the blocks for the previous three prints, and any future editions taken from them will have to be done with the same struggles, but hopefully, this next one will come out clear and sharp, from edge to edge.

We'll see!

This item is taken from the blog Woodblock RoundTable.
'Reply' to Baren about this item.