Sunday, April 20, 2014

Walking in the Woods

Lately I've been wanting to make artists' books instead of just blank books but, after so much technique practice, I'm finding myself rather stuck. The usual 'intimidating blank page' complex.

I'd like to make a book that makes the viewer reminisce about a hike or walk in the woods. To help get the creative juices flowing for this project, I went on my favorite hike in Mt. Tampalais-- the Steep Ravine to Dipsea to Old Mine trail loop. I think these photos just might be the start of something.  

Sunday, March 16, 2014

A Walk Around the Lake

Today was one of those rare days when I didn't work and had absolutely no plans or obligations of any kind. So, I took a walk all the way around Lake Merritt in Oakland. Here are some of the images I took along the way.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Southern Gravures

Chapel of Ease plate, it hasn't survived all that well

You may or may not know that I lived for a couple of years in Savannah, GA, when I first began my BFA. It turned out that the south was just not my cup of tea but I did have some amazing experiences there. 
My most common photographic subjects while I lived there were the numerous church ruins that could be found just over the border in South Carolina. The other night I had a dream that I was back there photographing. Strange, I know, but I just couldn't resist doing a little throw back and posting some images I took there. After moving to San Francisco, I turned the original large format negatives into photogravures (a long, complicated process that results in copper negatives that are printed on an etching press).

The Chapel of Ease was one of the easiest places to get to, being right off a main road. 

Old Sheldon Church was a little harder to find but possibly my preferred spot to explore and photograph. The church grounds are rather marshy and the ruins are surrounded by trees that make the entrance somewhat dark and gloomy. The ruins themselves are on a bit of a hill and in full sunlight, on a good day. You are so taken by this as you walk up, that you don't notice the strangeness of the trees, until you turn around to leave...

At some point in the past, the holes in the trees were bricked up. I am sure there is some innocent reasoning behind this but I always found them a little spooky, considering the ruins and graves nearby. 

Monday, November 25, 2013

Letterpress Gift Tags

Earlier this week I got to spend a day in the letterpress studio at the San Francisco Center for the Book teaching my first ever letterpress workshop--Letterpress Gift Tags.

The workshop was an awesome 3 hours of printing gift tags on tabletop platen presses. 

We began with learning to set lead type and basic press operation. Then we got right down to business with printing.

 Happy Winter was my design. The typeface kinda reminds me of a beer label...

 This one was a warm up for the students at they learned to work the press

How could we make holiday tags without naughty/nice ones?

Class ended with rounding corners, punching holes and adding string, so the tags could be attached to gifts.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Homemade Sign

Last week a friend of mine came back home after about a month in Europe. Another friend and I were thrilled to pick him up at the airport and we decided it would be fun to make one of those cheesy welcome home signs you always see in the movies. 

It began with a sketch of what the sign should look like. This also helped me catch spelling and logistical mistakes before we went large-scale.

Then, to the big blank page...

The plan was to have a faux bunting feel so I made a template triangle then traced it to get all the other triangles. Since we were being cheesy, I wanted the sign to have a playful/childish look so the triangles were free-hand cut with an X-acto making each one a bit different.

We just used glue sticks and my trusty bone folder to attach everything.

The letters were all hand drawn and colored; again to keep a playful look.

The finished sign was a hit! Sadly, I do not have an image of Sergei actually happy to see it, but it helped him find us, I swear.