Thursday, September 22, 2005

Back To The Old Routine

Things are back to normal since I finished the V&A blocks. I had a good clean and tidy in the studio and got to work on the BM bookplate. This is a great favourite of mine with a formal garden seen through a window. There is a lot of detail and it is time consuming but immensely rewarding. Unfortunately I havehad to break off for another illness - one that has left me with dizzyness and an earache that makes engraving an arduous affair. I will soon be ready to proof and print, however.

I need to reclaim my scanner - last seen in my younger son's lair - so that I can post some details from the V&A blocks.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005


I have finished! The last of the V&A blocks is in the post and I prey for a fast and safe journey for it to Canada. The final day was crowded. I was up at 6am to work before breakfast. I taught a full day at college, engraving in my lunch hour and then was back in the studio for the evening. The proofs ran to five states and I finally had the block packed at 12:30 am.

I think that I did a good job. This is the best sequence of prints that I have ever done. I am only too aware of the faults but if I waited until I was satisfied then nothing would ever leave the studio. I am proud of the achievement and look forwards to seeing the finished book. Jan at Barbarian Press is one of the finest printers of engravings and I won't really see the images for the first time until I have seen her printing from them. I am not going to publish images here or on my website as this is commissioned work but I have decided to follow this in a few days with a splash of details from some of the images to whet people's appetite. All being well, the book should be ready it time for Oak Knoll at the beginning of October.

Now I am frantically catching up with life. I am cutting a long overdue bookplate and sorting out forthcoming commissions. I am participating in a show opening at the Salon International de la Gravure in Morhange in France very soon and, as I am treating it as something of a retrospective and showing over forty engravings, I need to have enough unframed work to take to sell. This means lots of packing but also some printing. After than, my artistic life should quieten down a little to one or two commissioned blocks a month as I design and illustrate the first book for my own Oak Apple Press.

I am too tired to celebrate finishing V&A but to spend last evening with my family, rather than out in the studio was something of a treat for me - and, hopefully, for them as well.