Wednesday, October 5, 2011

White Line Woodcut Printmaking

My friend, Shirley, and I took part in the Saugerties/Woodstock art trail this past August.  We visited several area artists and met some really cool people.  One artist, in particular, stood out for me.  Anita Barbour.  Not only is she a super nice lady, she is very talented.  The day of the art tour, she was demonstrating White Line woodcut printmaking.  I'd never heard of it. It's an art form that was started in Provincetown MA back around the time of  WWI.  Below is a link to a website that explains it in detail with a few photos.
You don't need a lot of materials or fancy presses.  You basically have a line drawing on a piece of soft wood.  You carve the lines with either a wood gouge or a craft knife.  Next, a piece of soft watercolor paper is secured to one side of the design.  The design is painted with watercolors and you press the paper down on top of the wood and rub the back.  Peel it up and voila!, you have a color print of your artwork!  I couldn't wait to give it a whirl, so when I got home that day I used (don't laugh) a styrofoam meat tray and carved out a simple design.  No, this is no masterpiece, but it was fun to see the results.  I intend to get a proper piece of wood to try this on.  Hey, maybe I'll make my Christmas cards this year!

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