Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Art in Nature at Odiorne Point

copyright Hannah Phelps
"Odiorne Rocks!"
white-line woodblock print in progress
7" x 7" image size

Last week, I did my first ever plein air white-line woodblock print!

The Seacoast Science Center in the heart of Odiorne State Park in Rye, NH held a special "Art in Nature" event last week. Artists had a week to create small pieces in the park to be sold on Sunday.

Most of the time, artists paint in watercolor, oils or acrylics for these types of exhibits.  I have done that before and I knew I would have a good time painting the rocky landscapes in the park, but I wanted to try something different.

Monday morning, I was excited get started on my preparatory drawings so I could get right to the carving.  I rushed over the to coast only to find this:

How were any of the artists supposed to paint, draw or make prints of this? Well, we all made do and the fog eventually burned away. I chose a few scenes and drew for most of the afternoon. By the time I had a nice drawing suitable for transferring to a block, it was time to head home.

I returned on Thursday to transfer the drawing and carve the block. I could have done that at home, but I wanted the entire piece to be done at the park! 

I sat near my subject and carved happily away with the sound of the waves and the smell of the sea breeze surrounding me. A nice change from the oppressive heat inland!

Friday was inking day! With my brushes, watercolors, pallettes, and wooden spoon in tow, I set up on the stone wall and again enjoyed a wonderful day by the sea as I used the colors in front of me to create two prints.

Temporary outdoor studio!

I didn't realize until I got home that I completely forgot to photograph either print, so you will have to stay tuned to see an impression from this block.

Since I love being outside, you can expect more white-line woodblocks and prints done on site. I don't know if I am the first ever to do this-it doesn't really matter. It was worth carrying all the equipment around. I think all this stuff weighed less than my oil painting gear!

No comments: