"Natasha" Reduction Woodcut Print

                                             “Natasha”
                            Reduction Woodcut Print

I have always been fascinated and inspired by the BALLETS RUSSES, the story, the costumes and the people involved in the creation of this wonderful ballet troupe.  Originally conceived by impresario Sergei Diaghilev, the Ballets Russes is widely regarded as the most influential ballet company of the 20th century. I began in 2014 to create a series of woodcut prints to express my admiration and inspiration for this period of when art danced with music.

I decided to create this series with various printing techniques, Natasha would be a reduction woodcut. To achieve this goal I traveled to New Mexico to work with my friend and       mentor, master printer  Ouida Touchon. It was a very busy and exciting time.

I began to research images and began sketching ideas for my woodcuts from several publications . This  books  Ballets Russes and the Art of Design published by The Mocacelli Press became one of my best resources.

The Book The Ballets Russes and the Art of Design

The Book
                                           The Ballets Russes
                                        and the Art of Design

Design of costume for Ida Rubinstein 1909 in Cleopatre

Design of costume for Ida Rubinstein 1909 in Cleopatre

I found a wonderful  many wonderful photos of the work of Léon Bakst  who created so many of the costumes in the ballets performed in Paris 1910.  This one was one of the images I chose as my inspiration for Natasha.

 

 Drawing Detail

Drawing

 

        After tracing the drawing ,I began carving the 2 x 3 foot board…

it took 3 days.

 Carving The Wood Block

Carving The Wood Block

 Detail

Detail

 

 Carving

Carving

Natasha  begins to evolve

 

 Detail

Detail

Then came the challenging reduction woodcut  printing  process

 

 Ouida Registering first run

Ouida Registering

img_1746

8 Colors x 8 prints =16 runs of this image

 Drying each run

Drying each run

 

"Natasha" Reduction Woodcut Print

                                                             “Natasha”
                                               Reduction Woodcut Print