Saturday, November 12, 2016

Nautilus and Ammonite: Plesiosaur Pages

Plesiosaur  and Plesiosaur Fossil  
Double page spreads 11-12 and 13-14 
Screenprint, woodcut, linocut, watercolor, and collage on Rives BFK 
22” x 14” each 

Sometimes it's hard to get a project started, and other times it's difficult to complete one. Especially if the process is lengthy. I have already enjoyed many successes along the way to creating the artwork for my third book, but making final, permanent decisions about works can be rather daunting. Particularly, I worry about overworking a piece and inadvertently destroying the most lively aspects of what I've already done.

Just over a year ago I completed the storyboard, dummy book, and screenprinted backgrounds and began linocuts and woodcuts for the pages in The Nautilus and the Ammonite book. However, I had not yet finished any artwork of actual pages until this week. The idea for the project came almost two years ago, and I had done some preparatory work for it with sketches and learning to make screenprints, but the project really got off the ground during my residency last September at Sunny Point. Unfortunately, soon after that residency I ended having to sell my house and move, and so the project was put on the backburner for months, and it is only recently that I've been very slowly pulling myself (dragging, really) back into the mindset necessary to complete the work.

These are the first two completed double-page spreads, not including the text that will eventually be added. I was so afraid to pull the trigger on making final decisions for these works, but now that I've done it I am quite pleased with the results. I don't think I'll be diving back into this project at full speed, but this is at least the catalyst I needed to at least pick up the pace and feel more confident about the direction the project is taking.

The text that is meant to accompany these pages goes as such:

And the monsters vast of ages past
They beheld in their ocean caves;
They saw them ride in their power and pride,
And sink in their deep-sea graves.

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