November 01, 2009

Rolling back the clocks.

I'm sure I'm not alone but I LOVE the day we turn the clocks back an hour. A whole extra hour in the morning and the day seems like it's so MUCH longer. I got all kinds of things done today and I'm sure it's just because of that precious bonus hour conjured up by the switch to daylight savings time.

First, I added in the next colour for the blooms in the Hummingbird Vine print. Next week I can get back to the house portion again.

Second, I started working on this year's Christmas cards. I know. Crazy. It's only the first day of November, right? Outside the windows, the leaves are, in the words the dramatic Edmund Stone on NPR today, still "attached to their mother trees and showing brilliant colours". Christmas seems a loooong way away.

And yet, I know all too well from past experience how time has a way of vaporizing and a lot of the cards I make go overseas; I need to have them done by the first week of December. Also, I'm doing a reduction cut this time. A very basic one, only three colours (or maybe four) but it takes time for the ink to dry. Getting a head start seems like a good idea.

My original plan was to use Speedball inks. They're not great but they dry fast. I could print all three (or four) stages in one day. Nice idea except when I looked through my supplies, though I was sure I had more, I could only find two colours: white and black and neither one of those is what I need. So, Daniel Smith inks it will have to be.

The next problem is space. How, when I've got another edition hanging up to dry, do I make enough room for fourty cards on top of that? I solved that one by cutting my paper long and doing two prints per sheet, one at each end. Except I couldn't print this way on my press so I had to rig up a sort of a registration jig and I'm printing without the press.

I made a frame out of mat board just big enough for my lino block and positioned it against the right angle square I normally use. I'm not actually using those v-shaped pieces in the corners. It seemed like a good idea initially but my paper is too thin, essentially sketching paper, and it kept sliding around so I went back to using the hole puncher as always.

This is how the paper lays on top of the whole thing, held in place by the hole-puncher. I've already printed the image onto the other side which is why there's holes in the top.

Now, with the 13 prints in the Hummingbird Vine edition hung two per peg and back-to-back and the 36 card prints hung the same way, I have room for everything.

Sometimes, it's the smallest things that can make or break a day: an extra hour in the morning, a good drying rack, sun coming in through the windows...

1 comment:

Annie B said...

Interesting to see how you can print an area, "cover it up" on another overprint, then "add it back in" later. That's not possible using the transparent inks of moku hanga -- I'm suddenly envious of your process!