Wednesday, April 04, 2018

St Dwynwen part 3

Now that the mermaid sculpture and its prints are finished, definitely time to move on to something else.  Plus, I have a woodcut class coming up real soon in Belmar, someone asking to visit the Studio and see the process, and I like to keep busy with the art.  I have firm ideas for 3 prints, and two have been started to some extent.  Decided the one to work on today would be St Dwynwen, which I wrote about back in February.

Although this piece is a saint, it's not part of my Everyman series, mostly for two reasons.  First, it's not in the Butler's books that are the origin of that series, and second, it's not clear if she is actually a saint, as neither the Catholic Church, or the Anglican Church (which dominates the part of the world that she was from) acknowledges her.  Right now there's mostly just a decayed abandoned church building in Wales and a lot of legends.  Butler's casts doubt on the stories of quite a few saints in the biographies, but at least it lists them.

However, the story I have pieced together is hard to resist.  Not so much for the saint, but for the customs of the holidays, which involve carved wood and wooden spoons, both part of my print process.   The above sketch was done weeks ago in the waiting room of my auto repair shop, as I was getting a repair done.  Since this isn't a part of my Everyman series, I don't want to use that standard format of those.  What I came up with that day was something reminiscent of a standard playing card.  Maybe it was the plan to use heart shapes that made me think of it.  It will be a vertical design, more or less the same whichever end is up.  In this early version, long wooden spoons point up and down, there's a wheel in the center (a common symbolic thing in art of this tradition), and typical woodcarving tools. horizontal and filling the space.  It will be hand colored, but color patterns will be simple.  Right now the plan is to make this for my contribution to the East Meets West print show, but it could be part of other shows as well.

I found a medium-small piece of birch plywood, on which I started laying out a 10" x 7" design, based on the above sketch.  Didn't get too far today, since I had other things to do, the show it's intended for is several months away, and I could see from the sky that a big storm was heading our way.  Brought the block home to work on if I have time.


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