Cutting Into Awesome!
 
 Here is a sample of my woodcut printing. I'm inspired by the old Medieval ones. Doing this is a chore that takes some expertise in 2d design and line art, lots of planning, lots of tracing, lots of carving, and lots of PAIN in the hands! But dang I love it! And am very excited to share it with you!  

This piece is called "The Value of Isolation." On the left is a photo of the woodblock after its first inking. It's so satisfying to see the raised surface light up with the black shapes that take the ink. The pale wood you see are the areas I carved out. The image on the right is what the final print looks like. It was printed on Japanese rice paper. I use poplar wood and Chokokuto Power Grip carving tools. The ink used here is oil based, but for future printing I will be using water-based ink for ease of clean-up. I'm not sure what the new ink will look like yet (fingers crossed). 

I haven't done this in a few years and the itch to get back into it has started. And I think I have a good reason to get started soon. I did a survey on Facebook asking for opinions on illustrations in novels and would say 97% of the answers were YES! I think we are in just the right age for appreciation of that sort of thing. So if I do ultimately decide to illustrate the novel it will be in this medium. I better get started right away! Stay tuned for updates and videos of the process. 

But don't worry, I've already thought of the importance of NOT distracting the reader from the text. The illustrations will be planned out well. There will be less than one illustration per chaper IF I do decide to scatter illustrations throughout the book (the illustrations will appear between chapters--NOT in the middle of them). Ohterwise you may see one/some before the book starts and after the book finishes. Or perhaps I'll divide the book into two parts and have a collection of pictures illustrating what you just read about in part one as a sort of intermission before moving on to part two--and then another small collection after the book ends. If you have any thoughts, opinions, or suggestions about this illustration idea, please don't hesitate to comment below! 

In other plans. I wll be sharing more of these pieces to my patrons! So stay tuned. AND as a way to help fund the book publication, I'm pondering printing off these prints to sell. I'll most likely be using my Etsy store to do that so will get back to you with links and whatnot later. However, I will make the prints available to my Patreon patrons at a discount, how does 50% off sound??? These images may also be printed later on merchandise like shirts etc. so please stick around (who knows? There may be giveaways involved)!  

Now I'm off to brainstorm some more designs! See you next post...