You Call It The Studio, I’ll Call It The Kitchen Table

Recently Charlie Hillhouse (of Small House Books) dropped round to take some photos for the folks at Mild Manners. I was in the middle of finishing the last woodcut that will be in next week’s show. This is where I spend most of my days off. Around meal time it’s the kitchen table – the rest of the time it’s where all the projects that are strewn around the house are worked on.

StudioVisit_1

While most of the time is spent carving the woodblock, once a woodcut is finished up, I head downstairs to the spare room which doubles as my makeshift printing room. On this day I was going back and printing a woodcut I hadn’t touched for over a year and had not gotten around to editioning. Everything is pretty much DIY. A jig from some left over timber. Inking glass that’s from an old picture frame. A drying rack that was once a clothes rack. Whatever gets the job done really.

StudioVisit_2

The vast majority of my prints are printed by hand (I don’t actually own a printing press). This means that when using a baren (the little bamboo disc beside the print there) I usually need to make a few passes of the print – ink the block, apply the paper, ink the block, re-apply the paper and so on.

StudioVisit_3

This is the fun part where I get to see if the woodblock has worked and eventually with the right amount of ink, the image starts to come off the block

StudioVisit_4

And if everything goes according to plan then I’ll end up with a rich image with just enough wood-grain to complement the carved lines and add some texture.

StudioVisit_5

So while I might take days, weeks or even longer to carve out a woodblock, I can usually have a few prints made in a couple of hours. A satisfying way to end the creative process.

Thanks to Charlie for the snapshots of me at work.

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  1. Really enjoyed this blog, always great to see how other artist work and the space they work in, Thankyou for sharing.

    • Hannah
    • May 20th, 2013

    will this print be for sale at the exhibition? I really love it. Great post too.

      • alexandeverything
      • May 21st, 2013

      Yes, this print will be available at my exhibition opening this Thursday night. Thanks, Alex.

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