I Think I Got This Print Thing


I think I got this printing thing worked out fairly decently now. I found the perfect paper. I got my archival varnish and now I’m just waiting on my newly designed little “Certificate Of Authenticity” cards to come in and I’ll be all set. First I’ll be doing a limited run of “Quiet Agony” which is also my avatar and logo. I’ve been asked on occasion about this drawing so I decided to release some 5×7 prints of it. Since, for now, I’ll be doing my own prints, I’m sticking with sizes that I can handle (4×6, 5×7 & 8×10) and small runs of limited editions (10-50). I’m pretty much a one woman show here so I’m trying to keep from overwhelming myself. This is a new direction for me and I’m learning as I go. So here’s to the best of new adventures and growing in my career as an independent artist. 😊

First Day Of Summer

As today is the first day of summer I give thought to the Cosmos, the Earth and to Nature and are reminded of quotes by Buddhadasa Bhikkhu and Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee .

β€œThe entire cosmos is a cooperative. The sun, the moon, and the stars live together as a cooperative. The same is true for humans and animals, trees, and the earth. When we realize that the world is a mutual, interdependent, cooperative enterprise… then we can build a noble environment. If our lives are not based on this truth, then we shall perish.” ~ Buddhadasa Bhikkhu


If we recognize the Earth as a living, spiritual being, we will find that she can regenerate.” ~ Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee 


May we always be mindful of where we came from, to what we will return and our interconnectedness to all that is around us. πŸ™πŸ˜Š

Small Prints

 

Over the past few weeks I’ve been working out the details for doing my own prints, hence the slow progress of my current drawing “Dahlia”. In the past I have ordered a few prints of some old works from a few printers and really didn’t like the quality. Plus I just like to be involved in every step of the process of my work. In other words, I’m really a DIYer. So keeping that in mind I decided to take the plunge and do the prints myself. At the moment I don’t have $500 lying around all willy nilly to just up an buy one of those wide format Epson printers that are often praised by artists who do their own prints, so I’m just working with my Canon Pixma.

Making good quality prints can get a bit involved. There’s the issue of paper quality, ink quality and preservation of the print after it has been processed. I’ve learned that for the best quality you want a printer that uses pigmented ink rather than dyed ink. Pigmented ink apparently are longer lasting compared to dyed inks, are of archival quality and have better color stability. Unfortunately my printer uses dye ink along with most office printers. At first I was discouraged but then I got to thinking, maybe there’s something I can put on a print to protect it from things like UV rays from sunlight, moisture and dust which is what pigmented inks are suppose to do. Luckily there is, it’s archival varnish spray. I don’t currently have any but I just ordered some. Lastly I need a good quality paper to print on, preferably archival paper which is acid free and lignin free. I already have a pack of Epson Ultra Premium Presentation Matte Paper that I’ve been testing out. So far the prints have been turning out pretty good. I don’t know if the paper is archival though. I did some research and learned that it used to be called “archival matte”, then it was switched to “enhanced matte”. Now it’s called presentation matte. No where on the packaging does it say that it’s archival so I’m going to assume it isn’t but it still yields a really good print, which you can see in comparison to the actually drawing below. Anyhoo, I’m now on the hunt for some quality printing paper for my art. My plan is to start out with a small limited edition of 4×6 or 5×7 reproduction prints. If everything works out, I should have everything worked out, with my drawing finished and prints ready to go by the end of this month. Wish me luck. πŸ™πŸ˜Š

Five Things To Remember As An Artist

Number 4 resonates with me the most. In this day and age where everything is immediate and accessible practically 24/7, having patience is becoming a lost virtue. I find myself feeling as though I need to be a machine to keep up, to compete in this “instant gratification” world. People can easily forget about you if you’re not cranking out work at the same speed as pushing a button. But among my own personal beliefs, I feel that the creative spirit comes from Nature and if you’ve ever paid any attention to Nature, She has never been in a rush to do anything. The only things that tend to happen quickly are disasters and destruction but creation takes time and effort. We can get fooled into believing in “over night” success because the media likes to highlight these anomalies but often such successes are 7, 10, 15 and sometimes 20 years in the making. Anything worth any true value or beauty takes time to create. So if you’re like me, keep something like this list around to remind yourself to have patience with yourself and your craft. Nothing great was ever built in a day.

Weekend At The Gardens

Bonsai

Made my way to our local botanical gardens, Matthaei, this weekend. I got married here and I’m a little embarrassed to say this is the first time I’ve been back since then, even though it’s just a 20 minute drive away.  I don’t intend on staying away so long from now on since this is a wonderful resource for me to come and snap my own reference photos for flowers and various plants. To my delight, I lucked up and visited on a weekend where they were having a beautiful outdoor Bonsai exhibit. It brought back memories of a failed attempt to do my own with a little bonsai tree purchased from our local grocery store. It wasn’t until we got home that we discovered that the poor thing was infested. Word to the wise, don’t buy bonsai from a grocery store. Get them from a reputable nursery.

Anyhoo, here are a few photos from my weekend adventure. 😊

Peony


A lovely indoor Koi pond.

Bonsai

This is how pineapples grow. I honestly thought they grew on trees like apples. Learn something new everyday.

This monstrosity is a Peruvian Apple. I suspect you don’t make pies from it.

Furry cactus. That’s not it’s real name, that’s just want I called it. Amazing but creepy.

This is a Sausage Tree…and that’s all that I’m going to say about that.

These purple beauties didn’t have a sign on them so I have no ideal what they are but from the angle I took this picture, you get the feeling you’ve entered the land of Dr. Seus.

African Senna. I have a feeling these will end up in my drawings.