52 Weeks of Print: 33/52

52 Weeks of Print: 33/52

After 32 “Weeks” of Printing, it’s time to put on my big girl pants and move past a simple monoprint.
This week I eased into the world of reduction printing. It’s still a carved block print made with linoleum or wood blocks. In Wikipedia’s words, a reduction print is a multicolor print in which separate colors are printed from the same block at different stages.
I know. Kind of scary because if you make a mistake there’s no going back. Hence, MANY different prints are made in an attempt to end with one non crappy result…at least in my world. So, if you’re actually doing a series, you’d create more than your targeted number of prints.
With this simple print I decided to use three colors – printing lightest to darkest. Here’s the process in a nutshell…

52 Weeks of Print: 33/52 first cut

After this picture was taken, I decided to carve out the holes on one side to keep white.

52 Weeks of Print: 33/52

After printing about a thousand five of the first color,
I carved away the negative spaces for my second color.

52 Weeks of Print: 33/52 second cut

aaaand printed with my handy dandy wooden spoon to get this…

52 Weeks of Print: 33/52

Finally, I carved practically everything off, keeping a few lines for details with the darkest color.

52 Weeks of Print: 33/52 third cut

52 Weeks of Print: 33/52

Below is a collage of the process. I made this at-a-glance sucker for my own use.
Because understanding reduction printing is a process.
If you’d like this chart, just click on the image and download.

Reduction Printing at a Glance

So there you have it. A simple, three color reduction print. Now that I’ve been able to wrap my mind around the process without completely flubbing up, I’m doing more. It’s kind of addictive.

Sources for learning the process of reduction printing:
Printmaking Demonstration: Four Color Reduction Linocut by Belinda Del Pesco
Printing a Reduction Linocut by Mirka Hokkanen
This picture does of great job of explaining the process visually.

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