I genuinely thought this would be easy.
Making one-hundred and one unique, all-different woodblock prints turned out to be tremendous work.
In case you don’t know..
Last May (or so), I made a simple wager with Dave. I would make 101 Woodblock prints before he wrote 101 articles about WordPress.
I started printing the day before my birthday, the last day of my 30th year. I started with a couple woodblocks and a couple linoleum blocks, and along with my buddy Patrick, spent the day mashing ink against paper.
I thought I would be finished in a month or two, but I seemed to underestimate the amount of work this would take. A little over 8 months after I started, on Superbowl Sunday, I printed the last run on the last print, right around midnight.
This project was about 10 times larger than I thought it would be.
Dave won the bet many months ago, and got a thriving website as a prize.
I’ve got ink-stained hands and a stack of artwork.
What’s happening to these 101 prints?
They are for sale.
Print Number 80. This and many more like it are part of the 101 Woodblock Series. At this low price, they don't come framed though..
And dirt cheap, for the time being.
As I started to finish these prints, I decided to sell them to my email newsletter subscribers (and ONLY to my email subscribers) for the amount that my materials cost me. That’s $3.55 each, plus $5 for shipping.
Like I said, dirt cheap.
I decided to sell them for this price until I finished all one-hundred and one. Which of course, happened last night. I still need to sign, title and number these, and I need to scan each one, so the price isn’t going up yet.
On February 22, the price increases to something reasonable, $20 or $30 per print. Still cheap, but not dirt cheap.
Sign up for my newsletter, and you will be sent a link to the gallery page where you can see every print, and buy at the current “pre-release” price. Click the word “newsletter” to sign up.
Ok, sales pitch over. You know if $8.50 is a deal for a work of hand-printed art.
Dave was up late last night, and called when he saw my twitter post hit. He gave good advice – don’t stop, don’t take a break.
The temptation is to “take a break” and take some time away from making prints to “recharge” or some such nonsense.
As usual, however, Dave and I were on the same page. What he didn’t know is that I had already started the early work for my next woodblock print. I spent half an hour or so Saturday morning taking reference photos, I’ll do some sketches tonight, and I should be carving the first blocks by next weekend.
Time for a Change
A sketch of my nephew, from a visit last December
If you’ve taken a liking to the sort of images I’ve created so far, you’re out of luck.
I’m shifting gears.
The 101 Woodblock Prints were influenced by design sensibilities. I focused as much on color, balance, shape, and other design considerations as I did on imagery.
I’ll be making a shift towards figurative woodblock prints (pictures of people). I want to convey drama, emotion, and pathos. I’m not exactly sure what shape this will take, I’ll find out.
(If I ever use the word “emo” to describe my work, however, you are free to punch me)
My plan is to produce one edition of prints each month for the rest of the year. I’m done making each print unique for the time being, I want to return to traditional printmaking, reproducing the same image a number of times.
What’s next? Lots more work.
No breaks, and no brakes.