As we continue to evolve etckt.com, one of the key things we will be expanding is our original content creation. Currently we are working on a new iBook experience for Epcot and a Kickstarter plan around that development.
In the interim, however, there numerous smaller projects in development for gallery shows around the country. For one of the more recent shows, we created some hand-pulled linoleum block prints and had some extra supplies left over.
Selecting one of our icons from PixiePins (see icon above), we transferred that image to the block using a laser print. Essentially, you print the image on regular paper, cut it to size of the block, coat it with some acrylic gel medium and place on the block. After burnishing it down to the block, leave it to dry for at least 8 hours.
Once dry, place a wet cloth over the paper, letting it to soak sufficiently and then rub the paper off the block. Don’t worry that you will rub the image off the block, as it is permanent at this time.
Once the image has been revealed, you can wipe the block dry and begin carving the image.
For this image, the black portions are what we want to remain at the end of the process; meaning that the final print will look similar to the block at this state.
One of the first items we did, was to use a fine blade to cut around the entire image, so when carving begins the edges will be crisp.
Once that is done, we begin carving using one of or smaller V blades and following along those preliminary cuts on the block.
The process to remove so much of the block takes time and repeated passes to insure the lines are clear and will create the desired effect when printed.
One of the great things about the process, however, is the labor involved to produce something tangible. Working in digital media day-in and day-out, the opportunity to create a physical piece of work that requires no electricity, software or the web is welcome change.
Once the final carving is done, it is a matter of inking and pressing the image. For the test prints, I have used a traditional woodblock paper that provides a a good base for the watercolor ink that i have selected for this run.
On the first couple of prints, you can begin to see the final image despite a few areas that need some fine-tuning. After certain areas are cleaned up, the cut is complete and it is onto pulling prints.
We should have these online soon if anyone wants to pick one up and we will be adding more original creations over the coming days and weeks, so please check back. If there are particular items you would like or even a private commission, please let us know.