Thursday, January 5, 2012

East Shore Dragon Series

Okay, here is the series I promised to show.  In my previous article, I showed the photos I took to inspire me.
All of these are woodblock prints, but are completely individual members of a limited set of six.
My first job was to draw out the dragon.  This I did on cheap newsprint or something like that.  Then I did the highly technical operation of scribbling on the back of the paper with an ebony pencil, laying it down on the woodblock, and tracing over my work.  Instant copy, right on the wood.  Then I realized I had done it backwards, because I wanted the final dragons to be looking from left to right.  Remember, the image is inverted when you print.  Well, I didn't remember, so it turned out to be a joke between me and my students.  AND... I had to retrace and redraw it!  Oh, brother.

While I was carving the dragon, I worked on the backgrounds separately, so everything would be done at the same time.  I used my experience with lakes to inspire me. 
This first dragon is called 'East Shore Calm.'  I like the calming, cool feeling it gives me.

This dragon is called 'Keeper of the East Shore.'  I used the trees across the lake and the beautiful fresh sky to inspire me.  Note that you can see the colors through the dragons.  That was very important to me as I like the textural interest that brings.  We won't even talk about the pics I had to toss because the paint was too thick or too thin.
The next one is 'East Shore Dragon.'  Love the colors in it and the deep water feeling it gives me.

 The next one, with the dashes of red, is called 'East Shore Guardian.'  It's the only one with any reds in it, and I like it because of the way the complimentary colors work together.

The last one I named 'Dragon of the East Shore.'  The colors are really vibrant and bright.  I paint on YUPO, which is a 100% polypropylene paper.  Because of this, it's completely nonabsorptive.  I use colored inks because of their vibrancy, and they sit on top of the YUPO without soaking in at all.  The result is
 extremely bright jewel tones.  It's really difficult to paint on, but the tradeoff is extreme fluidity, an unexpected depth, and hopefully some nice, controlled surprises along the way.
I'm selling these for $300.00 each, and just framed my first one and put it in the gallery this week.
In my next entry, I'll give you some closeup looks at these works.

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