Coffee Cup line study

Untitled (coffee cup line study), copyright 2013 Nathan Yergler

4” x 5” linocut print

I wanted to practice using lines to describe, rather than outline, shapes and surfaces, so I took a picture of a coffee cup on a sunny day and decided to try and make a print from it. I worked small and (relatively) simple to avoid investing too much time in what is (effectively) a practice piece.

It was pretty instructive to carve this in an afternon, and then print it on Wednesday. Because it was small project, I was able to remember what I expected when I was carving, and compare that to what came out. There were a few things that came out as expected, and a few that didn’t. That was sort of the point.

author:Nathan Yergler
category:printmaking
tags:linocut, study, practice
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New Work: “Candlestick Point”

Candlestick Point”, copyright 2013 Nathan Yergler

8” x 10” linocut print, printed on Magnani Pescia

A dear friend sent me a photograph she took from Candlestick Point shortly after I made a print of a canal in Amsterdam. She noted that I’d been working with images of water, and thought of me when she looked out over the bay. I’ve been thinking about the image for a while, and started working on the actual print a couple months ago. I was finally ready to print on Wednesday.

Candlestick Point” plate, midway through carving

In this case I made a drawing from the photograph, transferred it the lino plate, and then starting thinking about how to actually carve things away. I was about 90% of the way done when I scanned the plate, as an experiement. I think it’s pretty interesting to look at, too. The rocks, in particular, are something new for me. It’s taken me a while to ease into using parallel lines like that to indicate shading and shape. It’s a technique I’ve seen others use very effectively, and I’m excited to develop it for my own work.

author:Nathan Yergler
category:printmaking
tags:linocut
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New Work: “Welcome Home”

Welcome Home”, copyright 2013 Nathan Yergler

5” x 7” two plate linocut print, printed on Rives BFK

Richard and I just moved from South Beach back to the area I lived in when I first moved to San Francisco, and we first started dating. We’ve been in the new place for a couple weeks now, and it already feels like we’re more in the city than we were before: closer to friends, closer to things to do in the evenings, and more in a neighborhood. I was in the studio on a Wednesday evening, just days before we moved, and I wanted to commemorate our new home. This is what came out. It’s not a literal drawing of the front gate and building, but it sort of takes the elements and rearranges them a bit. It’s one of the first things I’ve done where I just drew directly on the plate before carving, instead of doing a drawing first. Of course, I forgot to reverse it, so I still wound up tracing what I’d drawn, cleaning off the plates, and then re-drawing it. Sigh.

author:Nathan Yergler
category:printmaking
tags:linocut, multiplate
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New Work: Untitled (Bay Bridge)

Untitled (Bay Bridge)”, copyright 2013, Nathan Yergler

8” x 10” four plate linocut print, printed on Rives BFK

Shortly after I finished “Golden Gate” last year I decided I needed to do a companion piece depicting the other bridge in San Francisco. I pulled the first prints of the new piece on Wednesday, and I think it’s pretty interesting how it turned out. Just like on “Golden Gate”, I tried to stretch technically. One of the plates — the sky and water — is cut in two so I could ink the gradient the way I wanted to. When carving the water I limited myself to a rounded edge carving tool to try and make it more “shimmering”. And the cables on the bridge are represented using carved lines against the sky. All three experiments feel pretty successful to me.

When I was printing “Days Getting Shorter“, I experienced how much fun printing multiplate prints can be when the registration is loose. The loose registration on those plates meant that I could focus on inking, colors, and other things, and the registration just sort of happened. The registration on this piece is much tighter, and of the five I printed I only got one where it’s really right on. But even the ones where’s it’s a little off don’t feel like failures to me: I think because there’s so much going on, it’s easy to enjoy other parts of the image. And working on tight registration is something I can practice in upcoming work.

author:Nathan Yergler
category:printmaking
tags:linocut, multiplate
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“Golden Gate”, Linocut Print with Watercolor

Golden Gate”, copyright 2013, Nathan Yergler

8” x 10” linocut print with watercolor, printed on Rives BFK

In the process of working on Golden Gate last year, I printed the black plate on its own a few times. I’ve been experimenting with watercolors recently, and this is my latest attempt at mixing watercolors with my printmaking. I like how different it feels from the four plate print version. In Art & Fear, the authors talk about how every piece necessarily contains within it the seeds of what comes next: something you want to experiment with, try to do differently, take a little further. Part of what’s been so satisfying about experimenting with watercolors is that that seed is obvious, and at the same time I’m able to enjoy where I am today. That balance, appreciating what I’m doing today while at the same time feeling energized about where I’m going, is difficult and often fleeting. So I’m trying to enjoy it while it’s here.

author:Nathan Yergler
category:printmaking
tags:linocut, watercolor
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New Work: Days Getting Shorter

Days Getting Shorter”, copyright 2013, Nathan Yergler

8” x 10” Two Plate Linocut, printed on Rives BFK

This was a fun piece to work on. It’s based on this photo (used with permission, albeit after the fact), which I’ve been staring at off and on for months. The most interesting thing to me is how the rainbow roll turned out (the gradient in the image). The ink at the top is a magenta with a little blue in it, and the ink at the bottom is mostly opaque white, with a little black in it to make it about the color of concrete or pavement. But the black shadow at the bottom masks most of the pure gray color, and the opaque white in the gray seems to really bring out the blue that’s in the magenta. Totally unexpected, but very pleasing to my eye.

author:Nathan Yergler
category:printmaking
tags:linocut, multiplate
comments: