If you go down to the woods today..

23rd -27th April session.

Finally almost caught up with ourselves. Having now finished 'On reflection' and editioned enough 'Northern Lights' that we can fulfill our obligations should we get into the RA summer Show.

All we have left is Thicket, which has been hanging around in the back of St Johns and the back of our minds for a while now.

We had done most of the intricate cutting for the trees and branches but had too decide on colours and future direction. Always an interesting group discussion.

Starting off with a variety of proofs. Still haven't found the Goldilocks print. Too light, too dark, too Meh.

Nope too dark and dreary..

At this point when it's all got a bit bogged down and dreary, the only solution is to....well I try not to use too many technical print terms on this blog, but sometimes it's unavoidable.. the only solution is what we call the "Aaaah f*@k it, lets give something daft a go" technique.

So we changed direction completely and decided for the first time to try doing this print as a reduction rather than a multi block. Bit of a risk as we only had about 28 printed because up to know it was just proofing. These now become the edition and any trail 'proof' prints took a print form the final count.

This was also an interesting direction for the group as although Judith and Julia had done some reduction in their own practice and Merlyn had taught it to a student, only Ian worked in this technique all the time in his own work. Thereafter every time someone suggested "trying something out' or "re-doing that bit" Ian had to calmly and gently explain that this was no longer possible, that they had all been terribly spoilt working with loads of endlessly proofable blocks and this was now the far more honest, infinitely better and purer form of printmaking for Pine to be using. ( Yes. I am writing this - Ian )

Keeping up with the f*@k it technique we then tried a warm beige for the background, cut out some of the block, reduction style ,and then stuck a nice warm red over the top but kept the base foreground cool and shadowed in blue. As is generally the case with the aah f*@k it technique it worked a treat and made the print have a lovely glowing quality we all liked a lot.

We then thought we'd have a quick look to see how a dark final colour would look on the foreground so just selectively inked a few trees. Getting somewhere.

We then had a bit of a gap before the next Pine so this would have to sit and wait for Mid July before we got back together to hopefully finish it off.

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