Saturday, March 21, 2020

Vesuvio part 17

All the news across the country seems to be governors battling to show who will be tougher on the corona virus.  Not knowing what will be coming tomorrow, I decided that this morning I should start taking care of some tasks that would need to be done, while I still could. I've had a song running through my head by the Police- "When the world is running down, you make the best of what is still around," from one of their early 80's albums.  The narrator sings of sitting around enjoying his old records and videotapes, because there ain't any more being produced.  Get some of that feeling of late.  Food stores look looted, so much else is closed down, including businesses that many rely on.  Got word yesterday that the BAC has decided to close its gallery for the duration.

So with all that going on, I set out.  First I had to repair a pair of jeans. Noticed a seam split the other day on one of my work pairs, and the places I used to buy them have mostly gone out of business.  Eventually I'll have to find a new source, but for today, sew them up.  (making the best of what is still around) Then I took a ride to the closest Home Depot.  Decided I should get a new piece of 1/2" birch plywood, what I've been using for woodcuts in recent years, as I don't have any large pieces left.  Don't need it immediately, but it will get used eventually.  Have doubts about the April woodcut class in Belmar running, but I do have ideas for the next supermarket print.  Plus I did have a gift card.  Just enough to get a new 2'x4' piece of plywood.

My next stop was the Studio, convenient because I had to drop off my latest purchase.  I did so, but I also had work to do.  With all these doubts about the future, I figured I should go ahead and pull a better proof of my new block, while I could still access my Studio. (nothing has been announced yet, but that other shoe may drop sometime) I brought the block back inside, and had tools with me.

When I proofed it the first time, Sonic Youth seemed to fit well, so went with them again today.  Started with the one I had there in the Studio- Daydream Nation.  First step was cleaning up the block- removing missed remnants that would leave stray marks. Especially wanted to clear any that were on depicted skin, ones on objects could be parts of them.  The other thing I did was go over that ceiling shadow, and took out some of the black bits. No particular pattern, just took out some of the black on the block.  Adjusted a few other shapes as well. When I felt I had done enough, I cleaned up the wood shavings, and laid out some ink.  Rolled it up, taped some obvious problems, then prepared to print. Brought some Rives Lightweight with me, easier to hand print, but I will have to tape it down before I color.  Luckily, I have a large roll of paper tape for that purpose.

This second proof is definitely much better.  First of all, more complete.  There was a slip at the end, but it as pretty much finished at that point.  Color will cover some of this, which will hide some flaws, and draw attention away from other things.  I'm satisfied so far. The first proof will be fine for the first experiments, and if I find something I like, I will color this version as well.  Because color is a big part of the original location, this piece won't be finished until then.

When the first disc ended, another Sonic Youth, brought from home. Went with the album that followed the other one, Goo.  Similar in some ways, but with their now bigger reputation, a bigger hit. Did videos and everything.  As that played, cleaned up the ink, and shot some photos. Mostly demonstrating how pastels work, since we are in the midst of a pastel project in my college class and I can't demonstrate these things in person these days.

My next stop was in Belmar.  We had gotten an email saying that the gallery would be closing for the duration of this virus problem, after the day shift ended today at 3 pm.  Wanted to find out some information before it closed, so I can post it to the blog later.  So I got there, learned what I needed.  And then home to relax, check all the school emails, etc.


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