I began carving another print this week. It has been a very slow process trying to find a drawing and composition that I wanted to work on for this project. This has been quite an interesting process as I have a very specific drawing in my head, one that is tugging on me. It is a drawing that I see leading to a series of plates. I tried almost a month ago to put it down on paper but it failed to come to fruition. Perhaps I was just nervous or I did not have all the details worked out but it just seemed too unclear to pursue. Instead I hit the sketchbook, Waacom tablet and went back to the drawing board.
I am not giving up on the idea but instead I choose to focus on an aspect of the future drawing. I have long been intrigued by the Juniper trees that cover the high desert of Northern Arizona. I spent three wonderful years out in Flagstaff, Arizona. This college town sits just an hour south of the Grand Canyon. I spent most of my spare time exploring the beautiful countryside, hiking and investigating the local treasures, as there are many. There is much I love about this area but the Juniper trees are one of my favorite. Each tree is so unique twisted and curling upon itself like a series of ropes being pulled open from the inside. The textures and lines are puzzle that you could spend hours considering. They seem to flourish in the harshest environments dangling off the edge of a red rock cliff with the sun beating down but the roots are bound so tightly into the earth it defies the pull of gravity. A subject that is worth the time to create a series of sketches, a digital illustration and a linocut.
This tree will eventually be the structure of the future plate but not necessarily the star of the show. So for now I carve the structure and hope for a wonderful print to find its way out of this hunk of linoleum.