I put my knuckle to the copper plate. When I pull the sharp drypoint needle through the soft metal and raise the burr, I’m encouraged to know the engravers Durer and Rembrandt performed the same motions. To find the best way to render both delicacy and vastness of a landscape or capture life in a small drypoint etching is a unique challenge.
The process begins after settling on a subject from rough sketches or my surroundings. Using a wax or soft lead pencil and I draw straight onto the copper plate. This allows for a more free and natural design.
The lines produced in a drypoint print are formed by the metal thrown up at the edge of the incised lines and depressions formed in the surface of the plate. A larger burr, formed by a steep angle of the tool, will hold a lot of ink, producing a characteristically soft, dense line. That differentiates drypoint from other intaglio methods such as etching or engraving which produce a smooth, hard-edged line.
After the buttery ink is smoothed over the surface, I remove the excess using a painterly approach, which is gentler on the raised burr.
The plate is now ready for the press. A piece of damp printmaking paper covers the plate, followed by a thick felt cloth. Everything squeezes through the two horizontal rollers of my large Griffin press after several turns of the handle. I know a print has turned out well. The lines are clear, but soft, and the outside impression is deep.
The process is the same for each subsequent print. As the burr becomes more flattenedthe images are less clear. Finally, a small edition anywhere from four to twenty-four pieces takes shape, which receives my imprimatur at the bottom.
"When I think about artists in history who created beautiful etchings celebrating the landscape or effecting social changes with their satirical prints and posters I feel a sense of relevance. My aim is twofold: to satisfy a personal desire to see through the whole intaglio process, and to excite the viewer and even evoke a sense of nostalgia."
2012-2011 Audubon Autumn Auction - New York, Central Park
2009 Washington Printmakers - Washington DC
2008 Artworks Gallery – Richmond VA
Member SGC International since 2010
Artist in Residency
Rappahannock County HS 2005 Graphic design
NW Pottery Inc. Anchorage AK 1970-73
Science Magazine 1996
Illustrator, Web Design
Hearthstone Magazine Harrisonburg Va. 1994-95
Corcoran School of Art, Washington DC 1968-70 /design major
Northern Virginia Community College Annandale Va. 1970/graphic arts
VCU/McGuffey Charlottesville Va. 2001 printmaking