White Line Woodcut Fever

I love the textures from the wood.  You paint one section and then rub the back of the paper. Deceptively simple.
I love the textures from the wood. You paint one section at a time and then rub the back of the paper to transfer the image from the woodblock.  Deceptively simple.

I took a class with Amy McGregor Radin  in April of 2013 at the Arsenal Center for the Arts in Watertown, MA.  I discovered a  technique that brings together printmaking and watercolor painting: two of my favorite things.   White line woodcut was developed in Provincetown, MA in 1915, and made famous by Blanche Lazell and a number of other artists who embraced this simple technique as an alternative to Japanese woodblock printing (which requires a separate block for each color).

Painting the wood block with watercolor
Painting the wood block with watercolor

Below is a new print entitled Evening Owl.  I love the subtle gradations of color and the textures that are transferred from the wood.

Evening Owl

Mosaics at Maud Morgan Art Center

Seven students in my class produced beautiful work in a workshop at the Maud Morgan Art Center in Cambridge, MA on two chilly Sundays in April.  We worked on 8″ X 8″ squares.  The birds below are by Debbie Whitney.

Mosaic by Debbie Whitney
Mosaic by Debbie Whitney

You may recognize the mosaic below from my class at Mass College of Art earlier in the month.  Kate attended this class at Maud Morgan Arts to finish up her background and grout and frame her beautiful owl.  This is Kate’s first mosaic.

Kate Larabee's mosaic
Kate Larabee’s mosaic

Susan also decided to take the class at Maud Morgan Arts after taking the class at Mass Art recently.  Her two boxer mosaics are finished, grouted and framed.

Susan Berman's mosaic
Susan Berman’s mosaic
Susan Berman's mosaic
Susan Berman’s mosaic

Susan also worked on an abstract mosaic for the first time.  She worked with gradations of light and dark,  subtle color changes, and varying the shapes of the tesserae.

Abstration by Sysan Berman five hours later
Abstraction by Susan Berman

Jennifer created her first mosaic, inspired by a still life with tropical fruits.  She cut the tiles into very small pieces and worked on perfecting curves and color gradations.

Mosaic by Jennifer Jacoby
Mosaic by Jennifer Jacoby

Leslie has some experience with mosaics and used this class to develop an original design and to work on her composition and the flow (or andamento) of the tiles.

Leslie Walters' mosaic
Leslie Walters’ mosaic

Adria has worked in many other media, and this was her first experience with mosaics.  She used one of her paintings as the inspiration for this abstract composition.

Adria Arch's mosaic
Adria Arch’s mosaic

Dianne has been working primarily in clay, and this is her first mosaic.  Mosaics and clay go together very well; the broken pieces of ceramics can be recycled into a mosaic project.

Dianne Henning's mosaic
Dianne Henning’s mosaic

 

Year of the Quilt

I took a class with Kaffe Fasset (as he says, “pronounced like safe asset”) in Portsmouth, New Hampshire in 2012.  In this one-day workshop we all made the same quilt from a pattern called Sunlight in the Forest from his book, Quilts in Sweden.   This was the first time I used a piece of felt hung on the wall to “compose” my design before sewing.  It allows you to move the fabric squares around easily until you have a balanced and exciting design.  I really enjoyed the process.

IMG_0918I used a lot of Marcia Derse fabrics, which feature brushstrokes and simple patterns printed in subtle colors. I mixed in some striped fabrics designed by Kaffe Fassett.   Kaffe helped me to get the light and dark fabrics (I think I was the only person using black) to balance in a playful way.

DSCN0816
Kaffe critiques our work.

It took me about a year to finish the front and then put the layers of the quilt together.  Each square is hand-quilted with an “X”.  The binding is bright green.  I made the quilt as a gift for my niece Amelia for her first apartment in New York, where I hope it is keeping her warm and cozy.

quilt-lr