June 10, 2007

Blue Mood

This is an illustration inspired by the images from a book of stories I had when I was small; I think they were Lamb’s Shakespeare stories translated into Czech. On the back jacket cover was an illustration of Queen Mab. Her two distinct personalities, one benevolent and the other evil, were reflected in the two different sides of her face. The illustration resonated with me then and has stayed with me through the years. I’ve reproduced it in my own way a couple of times already so this is not the only version. Nor does this version show a particularly evil side; in this case I wanted the distinction to be a very subtle one. The block is slightly larger than I've been working with until now - the luxury of a larger press bed. The actual image is 6" X 8". There were only two stages:


R. doesn’t like this print at all, he finds it static – lacking in energy and spontaneity – and uninteresting. He’s waiting for wildness he thinks lies dormant inside me to burst but I’m not so sure it’s there. And, whether because the print reminds me of those from my childhood or not, I’m fairly happy with the result and I enjoyed working on it.

On another note, I sold my little “school etching” press last week and that chapter is closed. Ironically, the woman who came to buy it was Julie McIntyre who teaches the relief printmaking course I’ve considered taking on Granville Island. She’s a talented and serious artist; her artwork is philosophically and socially driven and full of implied meaning. Next to her prints, a mental comparison of my own work made it seem as so much fluff. I felt intimidated. Yet, in retrospect, I know I don’t want to make any statements through what I do at this point. I want to play, to explore different techniques and different themes, to make my small and insignificant comments on the things that move me into trying to capture them. Right now, for me, the journey really is the destination, even if the journey is a simple copy of an image remembered from childhood.