View Full Version : Woodcuts...

04-12-2005, 02:13 AM
I am new to this forum and new to "printmaking." Normally I am a painter (oils) but in the last couple of weeks I have been looking for new ways of expression. I have a whole lot of wood laying around and some basic carving tools so I thought that attempting some woodcuts might be a good option. My tools and materials are rudimentary....hands for a baren, bristle brush for a brayer, MDF (to start with) as wood and printer paper to capture the image. This is one I just finished, but there are a few more that can be seen at the "Blog" link below. Thanks for any comments on how these are developing. Jim

04-12-2005, 03:09 AM
I like this picture and especially the woody feeling of the tree which came out very nice. What size is it? I looked at the link, there are some very nice prints there. My favorite is woodcut#2, the image makes good use of the printing qualities in woodcut. I would like to see it printed more boldly but I see that you use what ever you can come by so I don't now if that is the look you wanted or is that just what came out.
Anyway, welcome to printmaking, I started not long ago and I should warn you as others here warned me then- printmaking is very addictive :evil: :D

04-12-2005, 07:15 AM
Welcome, Jim! I checked out your blog and you have some great woodcuts going on there! :clap: I can't wait to see what they look like when you get your hands on some printing ink, some nice paper, a brayer, and a baren (the back of a metal or wooden spoon works well too)!!


04-12-2005, 08:12 AM
Great work- Especially considering the tools you are using! Goes to show that you dont need to invest a lot to get good results.

These are DEFINATLY worthy of printing on nice paper... Also, a brayer might help you ink them more evenly, although it appears that you are getting some interesting texture in them by using the brush for this- Almost looks like woodgrain- in fact I assumed that it was until I read that you are using MDF....


04-12-2005, 02:29 PM
This is a wonderful print, and you really should use some good ink and paper to edtion this one. I like the perspective of the trees in the background, the lay of the land in the middle ground and the tree:D In other words it is a great success. I have not visited your site yet, but am going to as soon as I post this. If you other work is half as good you should be proud. Many people have trouble with their first prints, but your painting background is a plus in many areas of this medium. Welcome aboard, and I hope to see you posting more of your work.

04-12-2005, 08:27 PM
Thanks everybody for your very kind comments!

Danny, this is 5" x 6". And #2 is my favorite at this point too. I also know the addictive nature of this medium. I was a professional woodworker (furniture designer/builder) for many, many years so the tools and the material feel very comfortable. My painting studio is beginning to look like my shop used to look...wood chips everywhere!

Cheryl, Andrew and Clarissa..I am definately going to get some decent paper, a brayer and some printing ink to try and pull more satisfactory prints. The oil paint, when applied fluid and thin immediately soaks into the MDF. If I apply the oil paint in a thicker manner, I end up with brush marks. As Andrew mentioned it makes it appear to be wood grain. But my goal is to be able to pull prints that are as consistant in appearance as possible and by using a brush I would have too much variation in each print.

I have not yet done the research, but do any of you have thoughts on what constitues good paper?

Thanks again all! Jim

04-13-2005, 07:25 AM
I have not yet done the research, but do any of you have thoughts on what constitues good paper?

There are all sorts of paper that are considered 'Good'. The primary concearn is going to be that you use something that is going to last- something that is acid free. Beyond that, you can choose a paper that suits your style as well as your subject.

Your prints look like they would be great on a heavier printmaking paper- try something like Pescia or Rives BFK. I have been using a LOT of rives recently, and really like it. It is good and sturdy, but still soft enought to take the ink well.

If you print by hand, you may find a lighter weight paper easier to work with. There are all sorts of options here- pretty much any of the japanese papers are great, although some of them tend to be a bit expensive... The important thing is to experiment, and see what works for you.