Today's postings

  1. [Baren 38626] Re: pearescent powders (carol Montgomery)
  2. [Baren 38627] a huge new project, with a couple of woodcuts to show for it ("James Mundie")
  3. [Baren 38628] Re: a huge new project, with a couple of woodcuts to show for it (David Harrison)
  4. [Baren 38629] Summit 2010 ("Maria Arango")
  5. [Baren 38630] Actor seeks Advice on woodcut printmaking (David Bull)
  6. [Baren 38631] Baren Member blogs: Update Notification (Blog Manager)
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Message 1
From: carol Montgomery
Date: Sat, 11 Apr 2009 13:50:07 GMT
Subject: [Baren 38626] Re: pearescent powders
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Hi, Benny - I'm glad it worked! Yes, I am still a member of the CSP. Carol M
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Message 2
From: "James Mundie"
Date: Sat, 11 Apr 2009 19:07:14 GMT
Subject: [Baren 38627] a huge new project, with a couple of woodcuts to show for it
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I've been off the [Baren] radar for quite a while, but I haven't been slacking. For the better part of the last year I have been engaged in a project called "James G. Mundie's Cabinet of Curiosities", which features unusual items from medical and anatomy museums I have visited in the United States and Europe. I bring this to your attention now because there is a woodcut component to the series, two of which are viewable now at I have six more woodcuts underway, and three new etchings - so those will appear on that page as they emerge into the light.

The woodcuts are based on drawings I did on site during my visits. To facilitate turning my sketches into woodcuts I had for many years been doing photocopy transfers with oil of wintergreen, but recently I have had less than satisfactory results using that method. It seems to me that the formulation of photocopier toner has changed, and the transfers are no longer as crisp and dark as the ones I could achieve in the past. Even worse, the ink doesn't seem to bond to the wood as strongly, so the image gets progressively fainter during cutting.

To get beyond this, I have resorted to the old tried and true hanshita method - or rather, what I've been calling "The Lazy Man's Hanshita". Elsewhere Dave Bull has described his preferred method, which involves attaching thin specialty paper onto a sturdier substrate such as typing bond, which then allows him to print directly from his laserjet printer and then glue that face down onto his board. What I have been doing -- as I lacked the super-thin appropriate paper, the spray adhesive, and the patience -- is to glue a photocopy of my drawing on regular copy paper face down (I had Elmer's wood glue handy, so have been using that), allowing that to dry, then using a wet finger to gently rub away the layers of excess paper. What remains is a clear and durable image, which may be further clarified with a light touch of mineral oil. One needs to be careful in the application of glue and the removal of the paper, lest it tear or distort; but all in all I find it's a much superior method to the stinky and smudgeable oil transfer.

Should you find yourself in Los Angeles before May 9th, you can see fifteen photographs from this series on display at Todd/Browning Gallery (, in a show called "Shock & Horror: Human Oddities and Medical Marvels". The day that show closes, "Morbid Anatomy Cabinet" opens in New Orleans at Barrister's Gallery. I'll be showing six woodcuts, drawings and photographs there.

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Message 3
From: David Harrison
Date: Sat, 11 Apr 2009 21:32:13 GMT
Subject: [Baren 38628] Re: a huge new project, with a couple of woodcuts to show for it
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Great idea, James! Did you make it to the Grant Museum in London? My favourite
skeleton-sketching haunt...

David H
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Message 4
From: "Maria Arango"
Date: Sat, 11 Apr 2009 22:09:20 GMT
Subject: [Baren 38629] Summit 2010
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Dear Brave Bareners,

Family issues will prevent me from engaging in further planning of the
Summit February 2010 in Nevada.
Since Le Green was simultaneously planning a similar event, I took the
opportunity to bow out and encouraged Le to continue with planning our happy
reunion in Texas.

Please know that I am very sad about this and would not have canceled unless
I saw that it would be impossible for me to pull this off this next year.
Thank you for understanding, perhaps a future event is in the stars for


       Maria Arango
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Message 5
From: David Bull
Date: Sun, 12 Apr 2009 12:34:44 GMT
Subject: [Baren 38630] Actor seeks Advice on woodcut printmaking
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OK, here's a good one for you. I'm going to copy here the entire body
of an email I received this evening, because rather than reply to him
directly myself, I think it would be better for his purposes if this
'community' could reply ... There would be - I think - rather a lot
of ways to look at his question.

Please direct your replies to the list here, and I'll collate and
forward on to him (or maybe I'll just have him read the replies in our
archived version).

Anyway, here is the request:


Hi David,

[... greeting ...]

I am an actor currently rehearsing a play in which my character is an
illustrator creating an Alphabet book for children using woodcut and
printing techniques. I know your very busy but if you are able to
answer a couple of questions in the next week it would be of enormous
help to me. Sorry to mention a deadline but the play is into it's
second week of rehearsals.

My character has spent 10 weeks producing two woodcuts of
approximately A1 size - the size may only be this big in order for the
theatre audience to have an idea of what the characters are talking
when they refer to the work, I suppose if they were to be published in
a book they wouldn't need to be A1 would they?

I've been doing a little research on the net and am still struggling
to get a good idea of how long it should take. Obviously the time
taken to create a piece depends on many factors, the level of detail,
the number of colours and the size of the piece not to mention the
artists skill (and what else...?). The character has been to art
college and has spent at least another 3 years practicing the
technique but he has not been an apprentice. Below the character Mark
talks about his work,

"You make one false mark and all you have at the end is firewood. You
can't bluff this. you can't cut and paste this. It's a 100%
excellence, a 100% of the time. Any day now they'll bring out software
to match what I do with my hands. But not yet, Jesus. . . I haven't
seen my bed in four days, and that's the honest truth."

In ten weeks what would you expect of the the two pieces produced? The
illustrator in the play also spends 4 months planning his piece before
he starts. Is this reasonable? Could that be an appropriate time to do
sketches for 26 letters?

I'm trying to get a handle on how dedicated and motivated he may be.

So sorry to rush you.

Appreciate your time.

Thank you,


Digest Appendix

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

Subject: Saint Francis
Posted by: Georgina

This item is taken from the blog The Linocutter has a new adventure.
'Reply' to Baren about this item.

Subject: A happy accidental ghosting, gives me ideas
Posted by: Georgina

This item is taken from the blog The Linocutter has a new adventure.
'Reply' to Baren about this item.