April 18, 2016

52 Weeks of Print: 46/52 A Lesson in the Importance of Simplification

52 Weeks of Print: 46/52 Saucer Magnolia

You know, this weeks entry is a lesson in walking away. And critique. And patience. Positive and negative spaces and simplification. Whew! Stay with me here...

The first picture at the top and the very last image I took early this morning, after coming back to a post written yesterday, saved for today to edit and publish. The images in the middle are from yesterday.

See if you notice the differences. 

52 Weeks of Print: 46/52 Saucer Magnolia
(initial carving)

What I wrote yesterday: This week I sketched out several images of saucer magnolias and was convinced this was going to be wonderful. Then about halfway through knew that I wouldn't be entirely happy. In fact, I think it's a hot mess - shadows make no sense at all, the bottom half seems to run together rather than putting emphasis on the stems and I really made bad use of the smaller and larger carving tools.

52 Weeks of Print: 46/52 Saucer Magnolia
(initial carving)

Walking away yesterday and returned this morning to look at the pictures from a fresh perspective, I immediately noticed that if I went in and made the brights more bold (i.e. carved out for more whites by removing the small lines), it would even the look out a bit. 

52 Weeks of Print: 46/52 Saucer Magnolia
(initial carving)

52 Weeks of Print: 46/52 Saucer Magnolia
(final carving)

Creating a relief printing from a realistic image is a lesson in positive and negative spaces as well as simplification. I wanted a little of everything in this piece and it was too much. The difference, in my opinion, was slight, but a big improvement. The flowers are bolder and fit in better with the bold background. By simplifying, I think that it helped to balance out the look.

Now, about those shadows...

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  1. I don't know enough about the technical aspects of this, Lori, but I DO know that I think that it is wonderful!

    1. Thanks, Lisa. And this, my friend, is why you are my friend. (winky wink)

  2. Hi L. :)

    You know I LOVE your work :)

    I have not done much carving but I do understand enough to know how complex it can be.

    I totally get the frustration and the perseverance. The other day I told my Hubby, well I'm ready to paint over this piece of Artwork now (2004 piece), he looked at me stunned, really, yep, it was an exercise in drawing circles over stripes and painting all the spaces created in between, long, long winded, I knew it wasn't working 3/4 way thru but I was determined to finish, as fiddly as it was, to learn the lessons I needed to, now I'm ready to let go :)

    Sorry for the ramble, Happy Thursday, cheers, T. :)


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