After a busy week of studio work and traveling to see family, I was greeted by 4 new cans of printmaking ink. It was delivered to my doorstep.For the next week, you can find me busy carving, mixing ink and printmaking like a madman.
I’m still carving: haven’t had a chance to print these new colors yet. I did get to test them on paper–to see how they look. My favorite blue is pthalo, so I’m hopeful I can learn to work with ultramarine.
Here’s a preview of what I’m carving today. It’s the courthouse and church at Versailles, KY. The street in front of the courthouse is US ROUTE 62: one of the old highways from the 1930’s. It happens to also go right by my house and studio in Old Washington!
If you follow me on facebook, you may have noticed that I’m not sharing pictures and artwork as much as I used to. I’m trying to get into the habit of sharing my art, projects and photos on my website. Here is a little bit of what has been going on over the last couple of days.
I am working on an art project about US Route 62. On Tuesday, I visited the Josephine Sculpture Garden near Lawrenceburg (more about that in a future post) and Bardstown, KY.
I had never visited Bardstown before, it’s one of Kentucky’s oldest cities, and is also the inspiration for Stephen Foster’s “My Old Kentucky Home”. I think its really cool that Old Washington and Maysville share the same street as this “other” old Kentucky City.
I took one of my sketches from visiting My Old Kentucky Home, and have been trying to make a small, notecard sized woodcut from it.
Halfway through the carving, The wood had its own ideas, and the “o” in home splintered.
I carved the design a second time-starting with the words first, and the “o” in Old broke.
I decided I was trying to cut too fine details for that particular size, and carved white letters into a black background.
To balance out the tension of carving something so small and delicate, I followed it with a fun little Monkey playing a drum.
My final big accomplishment this week was moving my large press 3 blocks away from my house into it’s new home at the “Log Cabin Print Shop”, which is scheduled to open the first weekend of December as part of Frontier Christmas here in Old Washington. I only had one volunteer to help move the VERY HEAVY PRESS. It took a little bit of engineering to get it to work, but it’s ready to print. I still need to move my tools, drying racks, ink,etc, i hope to have some new prints to show tomorrow or tuesday.
These little snippets from my studio should pretty much have you up to date with my goings on. The biggest thing I miss from using my website instead of facebook is the feedback, so, if you feel like leaving a comment, I’d love to hear from you! Hope you all have a great week!
As usually happens at successful activities, I was too busy making prints to take any of my own photos. Lucky for me, there were lots of photographers at the event, and I can share photos through the lens of their cameras. Please let me know if I misspelled anyone’s name, or if you would like your photo to link to website. Thank you for sharing!
it’s been 10 years since I’ve thrown a pot. I wondered if it is like riding a bike. will I remember how to do it? we are having an #emptybowls fundraiser for the food bank in our community next month, so i gave it a try. my first attempt passed for a bowl!
Organization is not easy for me. I’ll have a broad range of different thoughts at once. It can be a beautiful thing, but quickly tailspin into chaos and dysfunction. I don’t think this is a unique struggle. Since our adoption of so much technology into our daily lives, we have been immersed in an massive amount of information…Not to mention tech companies constantly competing for our attention. It’s becoming a norm for the people I meet to be overwhelmed, easily distracted and unorganized.
Two weeks ago, a friend gave me a quick glimpse at their Bullet Journal. It was filled with colorful drawings and doodles; enough to spark my interest and to want to learn more. You can do a quick web search to learn more about the Bullet Journal. I have been using one for the last two weeks, and here are some of my thoughts:
Paper Is A Refreshing Change
There have been studies that show a hand written note on paper is easier to remember than a note typed into a computer or cell phone.
Working in a paper notebook has less distractions. The apps on my phone have been designed to constantly try to get my attention. A notebook has no apps and getting away from the phone helps me to focus.
Its nice to be able to flip through my notebook. I’ll get a glimpse of an ongoing project, and it reminds me to think about it. Often, my digital notes disappear into a void; never to be seen again.
I Feel Like I Am Staying On Track
I keep my Bullet Journal open on my desk. The constant visual reminder helps me to stay focused on the day’s goals. Even when I don’t get something done, the unfinished goals follow me to the next day. Now that I have a place to store my random thoughts, I can see the different pieces come togething into something useful.
Less Frills == Better For Me
The colorful drawings and charts that are possible are what got me interested in Bullet Journaling. I have since learned that a minimal style notebook is a better fit for my personality (for now). I get to draw and use colors all day in my studio, I don’t need a journal for a creative outlet: I need to quickly store and retrieve information. The plain black pen works for me.
Two weeks might not be enough time to determine whether or not this will be a useful tool or not, but my first impressions are good. Certainly good enough to continue using this system. If you are looking for a system to keep yourself organized, you might consider the Bullet Journal.
*Fun Fact: I wrote this blog post on paper before typing it on the computer.
I’m trying to do more daily sketching with a pen…to hone my drawing skills
The flowers have been popping all around my house
and they are too pretty to ignore
maybe tomorrow i’ll sketch some of the birds that have singing to me while I draw?
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Ken is a self-taught artist from rural Kentucky, whose work includes painting, printmaking, animation and ipad art. He considers himself to be a 'lifetime learner' and he uses art as the vehicle to explore and learn more about the world around him. Much of his work reflect his optimistic views on rural folk culture, river life and simple pleasures.
You can visit Ken every Final Friday of the month at studio 400 at the Pendleton Art Center in downtown Cincinnati. He can also be found picnicking near his home in the Historic Village of Old Washington, KY.