Friday, February 26, 2010

Collagraph Class Number Four

For such a simple printmaking technique, it is so surprising how many variations can be obtained with collagraph printmaking.  The class is making really beautiful prints as you can see below.  Only one more class to go!
Simone inking her plate

Simone's print, the tree branches are not inked, but simply embossed on the paper

Victoria's plate made mostly of wallpaper samples

Victoria's print

Sabyl's print

Two of Anthony's prints

Two versions of Kerrie's prints-she claims to have no previous printmaking experience, but we all think she's a ringer.  Her prints are so simple and lovely.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Tea towels now for sale on my etsy store!

I am excited to announce that I have my hand printed woodcut tea towels on my etsy store. They are 100% cotton flour sack tea towels hand printed with woodcut patterns for just $15 each.
Green border

Orange floral

Brown swirl

Green border with rick rack trim

Light blue whisks

Please stop by my store to order a tea towel!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Wine Crate Studio Shelving

Artists are always repurposing things as an economical and stylish way to furnish their studios.  A favorite storage solution that I use in my studio are wooden wine crates.  
The first ones I got were from a classmate in college that worked in the wine cellar of an expensive steakhouse in Tampa.  He would bring them in to the art department for anyone that wanted them.  I grabbed several of them which I still use to store wood blocks, and on the wall for shelving.  
My husband and I were in our local liquor store recently where I saw a few crates stacked by the register.  I picked one out for a mere $3, and immediately turned it into much needed shelving for my cans of printing ink.
My new wine crate - I love the mermaid on the side 

I measured and cut 1" square stock for supports, and cut some scraps of wood for the shelves.  The cans of ink fit perfectly!

Do you have a favorite, creative way of repurposing things for use in your studio?  Tell me about how you organize your space.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Collagraph Class Number Three

The collagraph class I'm teaching at the League is well under way.  It is fun to see what everyone worked on during the week in between, and how their prints turned out.

All of the prints pinned up 

Simone's relief rolled collagraph - we all thought it looked like an Oprah tree

Two versions of Sabyl's print

Sabyl's plate on the left, and the print pulled from it on the right

Mark silk-screened the orange ropes on the paper before printing the dark rope shape over it. He made the collagraph plate for this image by silk-screening gel medium on to mat board, and sprinkling carborundum into it to make a photo-collagraph.  After it dried, the plate was sealed, and then printed.  

Victoria's nests.  Her plates were made with raffia and string glued down to mat board   

The print on the left, pulled from the plate on the right

Friday, February 12, 2010

Collagraph Class Number Two

Last night was the second session of my collagraph class at the League.  Some students came in ready to work, and others were still building their plates.  Here are some photos of the first prints they pulled.

Mark's first collagraph print

Herb's figure collagraph

This cute little collagraph is printed from buttons!  The right one was printed first, then without cleaning the plate, yellow was rolled with a brayer over it and printed again for the print on the left

Sabyl's sampler plate

The print from Sabyl's plate

A "ghost" print of Sabyl's plate.  It is simply reprinted without reapplying more ink.  The plate still has residual "ghost" ink.  Sometimes the ghosts look better than the first print pulled

Two slight variations of the same print

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Collagraph Class at the league

On Thursday last week I started teaching a collagraph class at the Art Students League of Denver.  No matter which class I'm teaching, most of the first night is spent with my introductory lecture and demonstration.  It isn't until the second class that the students get going on their own projects.

Collagraph (glue writing) printmaking is primarily an additive process used to make collaged printing plates. Materials are glued or painted on a plate that can be printed as an intaglio plate, or rolled with a brayer and printed in relief, or printed in combination with each other.

Some of my collagraph plate demonstrations
Left; The collaged plate  Right; the print pulled from it.  Ink is wiped into the recesses(intaglio wipe), and the surface is wiped clean.  Smoother surfaces do not hold ink as well as textured surfaces.

Left; The plate  Right; The print that was first intaglio wiped, and then surface rolled with a blue ink on top

Two prints pulled form the same plate. The right print was surface rolled with a light blue ink over a dark ink

I will post more photos as the class prints their own projects.  Tomorrow will be the next session.

Free Printmaking Demo this Saturday!

I will be back at the Foothills Art Center this Saturday, February 13th with Jennifer Ghormley for a free printmaking demonstration. Drop in between 11am - 2pm and see how I make woodcuts!  

"Have you ever wondered how Rembrandt created his famous etchings? Learn how a fine art print is created using a printing press. Instructors Jennifer Ghormley and Theresa Haberkorn will demonstrate various techniques including woodblock, monotype and intaglio printing. Participants will have the opportunity to experiment with the techniques."

Save the date also for my Introduction to Woodcut Workshop at the Foothills Art Center, February 27 11am - 3pm

Stamped With Love Photos

On Saturday morning I raced back from Vail after visiting friends to teach a workshop on how to print your own Valentine's Day cards.  I usually don't teach kids, and was surprised that mostly kids came to print cards.  I luckily had just enough printing activities that would be safe for kids- no sharp carving tools! Here are a few pics of the workshop.
Valentine Robots

Printing Madness

A parent carved this linoleum block

The card is on the left, and the styrofoam printing plate is on the right

Friday, February 5, 2010

Opening Tonight Pattie Lee Becker at BMOCA

A few weeks ago I got an email from artist Pattie Lee Becker asking me to help her produce some woodcuts for her upcoming exhibiton at BMOCA.  We quickly became friends as I helped her cut wood blocks and print the rope patterns on fabric.  After printing, Pattie sewed the fabric into sculptures for her exhibition "Ropes".  Sadly I won't be able to attend the opening tonight, but can't wait to see how they turned out.

Stamped With Love Valentine Printing Tomorrow at Foothills Art Center

Join me tomorrow, February 6th, at the Foothills Art Center to print your own Valentine's Day cards for your loved ones

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Printmaking Books

I love finding second hand treasures.  Long before it was labeled as being "green", I loved hunting for cool old things at second hand shops, yard, estate or garage sales, flea markets, or even the side of the road. A while ago I heard a song by Cheryl Wheeler on the radio that sums up the excitement of estate sales. Watch her video on you tube. To sum it up, they don't make stuff like this anymore. I also love the 
history behind things, to imagine who owned them, and what they were like.  

Over the years, I have gathered a nice collection of printmaking books this way Some of my first art books were from an estate in south Florida when I got an emerging artist grant, and purchased the entire studio of an art teacher. Gradually I gathered books from used books stores, and if I really wanted a 
specific book, I would order from Amazon. On my recent trip to the Hospice 
thrift store, I scored five printmaking books that I am really excited about. 

Experiments in Relief Printmaking, Charles Smith 1954
Linoleum Block Printmaking Ernest W. Watson 1929
Modern Japanese Prints Oliver Statler 1956
A Treasury of Great Prints Irvin Haas 1956
Artist Proof Magazine Volume 1 Number 2

There were a few names written in them that led me to a doing some research online to find out who the previous owners were. I hit a gold mine of information! A local name in the books was Mrs. F. Paul Clements of Louisville that didn't bring up anything on Google. The second name claiming ownership of the books is Frederick O'Hara, who turns out to be a prominent woodcut printmaker from Albuquerque.

Inside the book Modern Japanese Prints by Oliver Statler, There were a few letters tucked inside.  One was written on old Par Avion stationary from Mr. Kiyoshi Saito, one of the Japanese printmakers written about in the book! There are several web pages about him,  is one.
The letter

           Image of Saito print from

The other letter is from Florence Pierce, addressed to Frederick as an attachment to the book, which was given as a gift to him from her in thanks for his thoughtfulness. Florence was another major artist of New Mexico -
Letter from Florence
Florence Pierce

Pierce pours layers of resin (mixed with pigment and/or milled fiberglass or cabosil) onto a square of mirrored plexiglas. The resulting work of art is like a living embodiment of light. Walk from one side to the other and it may change colors or depth. Shine light on it from the front and it will, depending on the color and composition of materials she has used, reflect overall brilliant light back at the viewer or show a deep, mysterious center bordered by a narrow, electric band of intense color. The variations are infinite, but the common element in all her pieces is a love of light and beauty that has made her work truly transcendental.

Pierce's artwork (photo from

It's amazing to think about the history behind old things, and the stories they can tell through a little research. I have only scratched the surface on all of these artists and how they were connected to each other.  The big missing piece of the puzzle is who was Mrs. F. Paul Clements, and how she obtained this collection of books.  Maybe she was Frederick O'Hara's daughter...  or she picked them up at an estate sale... I'm going to write a letter to her address in the book and see if I can find out anything else.  I'll keep you posted on what I find!

Opening Tonight at Center for Contemporary Printmaking, Norwalk, CT

Over the holidays I visited the Center for Contemporary Printmaking in Norwalk, Connecticut.  It is a beautiful printmaking studio in the carriage house of an old mansion.  A family friend of my husband took me there to meet Tony Kirk, the master printer and learn about the facility. When I got back home, I joined the center and quickly sent off a small print for their members show, Echo.  If you're in the area, stop by tonight for the opening and see the exhibition!