Gordon Mortensen

Gordon Mortensen

Pebble Peach, CA
Whaler’s Cove, Reduction Woodcut
17.5 x 15

Prepare a tonal image on basswood with pen and India in and seal block with shellac.
The relief reduction woodcut process uses one block for all colors. Before applying the first color, all areas intended as the paper color are carved from the basswood. I often print a part of the surface by rolling ink through cut areas of a stencil and protecting other areas during the first press run. A stencil allows me to print more than one color at a time. Open areas of the stencil are inked and transferred from the block to paper, this is repeated on each sheet of paper in the numbered edition. After completing the first press run, the areas that are to remain the color(s) just printed are carved from the block and will not print again. This process of printing and cutting continues until most of the block is removed and the printed image emerges on the paper. Whaler’s Cove has 36 colors and took 30 press runs to complete.