How to Make Something Beautiful (part two)

Canon F-1n                  Japanese woodblock: my vintage Canon F-1n (20mm f/2.8)

Start with something completely familiar – like an analog single lens reflex. Find a chunk of clear Douglas fir and sketch directly to the wood surface. Can’t draw? Doesn’t matter – that may even make it better. Cut out the drawing and ink the block. There’s something lovely and imprecise about the nature of wood: you can’t cut against the grain – it just splinters, but it still looks good. Straight lines get wobbly and clean curves are non-existent. The overall result is low-tech and organic, which is pretty much the exact opposite of photography. Don’t worry, you’ll like it.

I used my faithful Canon F-1 as a model for this woodblock first thing today. I inked it after lunch. Made a few corrections and called it done at 2:00PM. I’ll be creating a set of 10×10″ prints on Arches 100% cotton rag paper. Let me know if you’d like one – prints are $50/each, signed.

About John Durant

Professional photographer in California
This entry was posted in American Photographic Artists, B&W negative film, Baja California, Canon F-1, color negatives, color transparencies, f/64, Film, Fuji RDP3, Fujichrome, Ilford Delta 400, Ilford FP4, Japanese block printing, John Durant Photography, Kodak P3200, Kodak Plus-X, Kodak T-Max, Kodak TMY, Kodak Tri-X, Photography, Rolleiflex, San Diego, Vintage cameras, Wood block printing, woodblock and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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