I am working on a super fun project creating a portrait of Smokey a beautiful Weimaraner rescue pup who lives in Michigan. I photographically detailed the entire process for you to see, but especially for Smokey’s human companions. I know this girl is very special.
I start with a collection of photographs provided by Smokey’s family. I blow some up so that I can see detail, making copies both light and dark to see texture. Then I start the drawing onto a 7″ x 5″ linoleum block
This is the block before I carved it. I draw in a range of lines to use as a guide, but eventually my carving tool becomes my “drawing” tool.
I use a variety of carving tools to bring out the details of the drawing. I carve away everything that I want to appear white.
While I am carving, I also pencil in lines, and brush over the surface so that it is easier to see what is cut and what is left.
Once I am ready to print, I mix up oil based ink until I get the color I want.
I use a brayer to apply ink to the linoleum block, making sure to cover the surface evenly.
Once the block is inked up, I carefully place it on the press bed.
A sheet of paper is carefully placed on top the linoleum block. I have a “template” in place that is my guidelines for placement
I use this handle to crank the press bed under the rollers thus applying pressure to the block and transferring the ink to the paper.
Here is the print side by side with the block on the press bed.
Here is where it gets really interesting. I wanted to put a jacket on Smokey, so I took the first print, cut it up so that I would have a pattern of the jacket. I then reversed it, since everything in printmaking is mirror image and used it as a stencil to block out the ink. Meaning, I would ink the block, put this paper over where the jacket should be and print it. This will leave an open spot for me to put the jacket.
This is the block with stencil on the left, and the print on the right.
This is a second pattern I used to cut the Awagami Japanese hemp paper for the jacket.
I am sizing up the paper cut jacket before I adhere it to the print
And here is Smokey in her fine green jacket.
And in her fancy red jacket. I think she is looking especially fine.
Paper used: Awagami Factory, Japan, handmade Shiramine Select, 110g
Collage paper: Awagami Factory, Japan, Shin Inbe, color hemp paepr
Ink: Speedball Oil based ink
I use a variety of carving tools from Switzerland, Japan, and the Czech Republic.
If you read this far, and you want a portrait made of your pet, you can order one through my Etsy Store, at StonetriggerPress.