Wednesday, August 15, 2018


Hoplon, 8"x6", white-line woodcut print, framed, pictured with the block from which it came.

Now, back to our discussion of naming prints after naval war ships.

I started Vanguard in 2016 and it took me about 8 months to finish it. It was the first print I named using the new theme. 

But 8 months is a long time, so I did some other projects while Vanguard's ink cured between layers. One was this little white-line, using the painting you saw earlier in the week as a reference.

This rock shields me from the incoming tide when I paint it. The scene here is about mid-tide, but sometimes the waves crash right on this formation.

In one of my Jack Campbell books, I saw that a small ship in the space fleet was named Hoplon, so I looked it up.

A hoplon is a very large shield which is also known as an aspis. Ancient Greek infantrymen, also called Hoplites, used them to create their famous phalanx formation in which they would link the huge shields together to protect a whole group of soldiers from artillery.

We won't dive too deeply into military history here, but hoplons were used at the Battle of Thermopylae. 

You know King Leonides vs. Emperor Xerxes... impossible odds.... subject of some awesome, bloody movies...

"Spartans!! Lay Down Your Weapons!!"


Ahem... Good movie. Recommended along with the books in the last post about titling paintings.

Monday, August 13, 2018

Time to Return?

A New Look at an Old Friend, 10"x8", oil on gessoed board 

This summer has been quite sticky and hot and full of violent storms that come along in the afternoons.

Not really great weather for painting outside. 

But Wednesday looks like it might be ok... 

If so, I'll go back to visit this rock and some of its fellows with the Wet Dogs. It has been quite a while. I hope they remember us.

Friday, August 10, 2018

Heads Instead of Tails

Close up of a new painting

The last time you all saw this painting, I showed you just the tail end of two happy swimming dogs

This face belonged to Winnie, my first dog. She was a super swimmer, a gentle soul and all around best friend.

It is fun to see her again in these Wet Dog paintings - I miss her.

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Pumpkin on the Rocks

Pumpkin on the Rocks, 9"x7", white-line woodcut

Here you go - the second of the two new pumpkin prints all finished and framed.

It is in the printmaking show at the League of NH Craftsmen's Fair, but you knew that.

However, I just learned that they changed the location of the exhibit. It is NOT in the upper lodge. It is in the Spruce Lodge which is the building that hosts the Living with Craft exhibit. 

That makes it easier for you - all the prints are in one building. The jigsaws are upstairs and the white-lines are downstairs in the cafeteria.

So you can admire pumpkins and artwork by other League printmakers as you eat your eggplant fries.

Yes, eggplant fries are a thing at the Fair and they are actually quite delicious.

Monday, August 6, 2018

And Also

Green Wave, jigsaw reduction woodblock print, 6"x8"

The exhibit is really nice - lots of beautiful things by dozens of artists in different media. 

So go to the Fair and enjoy the show!

Friday, August 3, 2018

Also at the Annual Craftsmen's Fair...

Appledore Evening, 6"x8", jigsaw reduction woodblock print

This print doesn't have a fancy naval name, but it is also in the Living with Craft exhibit at the Fair.

If you can't get to the Fair, you can always see it - and a lot of other work - on the website!

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Started a Second One

Pumpkin on the Rocks, white-line woodcut print in progress

The first print off this block is framed and ready to hang in the printmaking exhibit in the upper lodge at Mount Sunapee. It will be there with its companion, Pumpkin by the Sea, for the duration of the League of NH Craftsmen's Annual Fair - August 4-12.

I started a second print just for fun. Next week, you can see a finished one here.

If you can't wait, visit the exhibit!

Monday, July 30, 2018


Vanguard, jigsaw reduction woodblock print, 16"x24"

For years, I titled my prints in a straightforward way. “Green Wave”, “Bright Day”, and "Appledore Evening” all describe the subject of the print.

But how many [descriptor] Waves can one have?

Well, not many before you accidentally try titles previously used by other seascape artists. Or even by your past self.

This wasn’t something that weighed heavily on my mind - when it was time to title a new print or painting, I'd settle on a simple phrase that would be easy to sign 20-60 times depending on the edition size.

At some point, that got boring. But what to do instead?

The inspiration came from the Navy. Not the American Navy, but the British Navy from their glory days.

And not really that British Navy from their glory days, but the space navy adventure novels based on that British Navy. And those stories are mostly based on the C.S. Forester novels about a fictional sailor, Horatio Hornblower, whose life closely parallels that of the real-life British hero, Horatio Nelson.

The first series of these contemporary stories that I read was David Weber’s "Honorverse". Instead of battling at sea, Honor Harrington’s character becomes a master at space war and she personally suffers the same famous injuries as poor Nelson as the novels progress. (I won’t spoil this, in case you don’t know about Nelson’s traumas.)

Several years later, I discovered Jack Campbell and Captain “Black Jack” Geary of the Lost Fleet series. Instead of describing them to you here, go ahead and look these books up. Every single one of them is a fun read, they are written well and the characters are delightful. You’ll love them. If you like science fiction space navy stuff. 

And you might not. That’s ok.

Because the reason I’m telling you all this isn’t to give you a summer reading list (though, you are welcome....).

It is to tell you about the list of ships in the front of each Lost Fleet novel. Space ships that are either directly named after British or American naval ships or in the same spirit.

Meaning, I don’t claim to know the name of every real commissioned ship in the real navies, but I do appreciate the creative use of the words these navies displayed.

The easiest thing for you to do is buy the Lost Fleet series and read it yourself,  but here is a taste:


It goes on and on. My absolute favorite is


And did the writers mentioned earlier invent this Space Navy based on Water Navy thing? Of course not. Whether or not you are a true fan, you all know that the show Star Trek’s Starfleet boasted the Enterprise. On top of that, they named other ships Endeavour, Intrepid and Valiant.

There is so much more to say about this. For now, I just wanted you to know where new titles are coming from.

And we start here with Vanguard, which is what the first force of a military action is called. The word now also means the leading edge of anything new - ideas, projects, missions, adventures. 

Which made it the perfect choice for the first print I started with this name theme in mind. It wasn't the first I finished, but that story is for another time.

Friday, July 27, 2018

New Digital Prints

Wet Dogs Jump the Waves and Wet Dog in the Sun

The two newest Wet Dog paintings are now available. Both are 10"x10" printed with a professional grade printer on fine art 12"x12" paper.

If you like original oil on canvas better, you can have that instead - these are both still available.

Think about it and let me know when you are ready to bring these pups home.

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

Ready to go

Pumpkin by the Sea, 9"x7", white-line woodcut

This pumpkin print and its buddy are now at Mount Sunapee awaiting the League of New Hampshire Craftsmen's Annual Fair. 

Want to see the other one? 

You could sign up for the newsletter - the subscribers will see it next week. 

You could go to the Fair - it runs from August 4-12.

You could wait until it shows up here...

Monday, July 23, 2018

Wet Dogs and Framing

Close-up of a woodblock print.

It seems like every summer, when there is a lot of framing to do, that the dogs get mucky and wet and want to shake all over the white mats.

Which turns this image of a happy dog into a nightmare for the framer.

Friday, July 20, 2018

Rocks, Waves, Frames

Intemperate, 24"x18" image size, and Vanguard, 16"x24" image size

This all took longer than expected, but these two very large prints are now framed and ready to hang in the Living with Craft exhibit at the League of NH Craftsmen's Annual Fair.

Two smaller ones are going too - Appledore Evening and Green Wave, but they were already framed.

The next two things to be framed are the new pumpkins for the printmaking exhibit in the other lodge. You will see that on White-line Wednesday.

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Pumpkin Print and Block

As you can see, this white-line woodcut is almost finished. It will be one of the many things dressing up in a frame before Friday. 

Because I told you I'd get some framing done by Friday... So I better have some framed stuff to show you Friday. 

I know I said this last week, but I really like how the wood grain is showing up in the print. Just a few more shapes to go.

Then you'll see some framed stuff on Friday.... 

Monday, July 16, 2018

More Distractions... I mean, New Projects

Close-up of a new painting

Last Friday, you saw the very beginnings of a new print. One of two new prints based on a foggy marsh last autumn.

This is the very beginning of a new Wet Dog painting. This is just the dog butts - they do show their faces in the final painting.

Why are there so many new things beginning around here?

Because painting is more fun than framing, that's why. 

But framing can't be avoided forever and so I will say right now, today, that you will see the fruits of framing labor on Friday. Of this week. 

If you don't see any framed pieces here on Friday, bug me about it ok?

Friday, July 13, 2018

Much to Do

Plein air painting of fog, tracing and outline on wood for a new print.

When you have to frame seven things in less than two weeks, one of which needs to be finished, the logical thing to do is start new prints, right?

Well, for some reason that seemed like a good idea to me. This painting is from last fall - remember the story about the day it was painted? 

Now it's the inspiration for two new prints. The goal is simplicity and efficiency. That is always the goal, but this time I mean it.

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Another Pumpkin gets Pressed

As promised last week, here is the second of the two pumpkin white-line woodcuts I'm making for the printmaking exhibit at the League on NH Craftsmen's Fair.

The grain from the pine board is distinctive in this print, which is giving it some interesting textures.

Next week, you'll see more!

Monday, July 9, 2018

Dog Butler

Measure and Coast waiting for me to open the door.

I haven't been completely honest with you and it is time to come clean.

You all think that my primary occupation is Artist - that I spend all my time painting and drawing and mixing ink and carving wood and printing. Sadly, that is not true.

I have this completely separate life that I have hidden from the outside world for years.

My primary job is not Artist. It is Dog Butler.

Most of my time, I am at the beck and call of the two Golden Retrievers who live in this house.

When they demand to go out, I rush to the door to open it for them. When they wish to come in, I open the door before they can bark in reprimand.

Their meals are prepared and set for them on a regular schedule and cleaned up after by me.

I ensure they are properly attired for the day’s activities. Some days we need the collars with the embroidered phone numbers and other days we need to wear our peacocks and pandas. There are harness occasions and slip lead occasions.

And they have appointments they must keep - to the veterinarian, the trainer, competitions, training dates, hikes, masseuses and chiropractors. It is I who make these appointments and keep the Little Masters on schedule.

I heartily apologize for keeping this a secret for so long. Now, when the blog seems light on new artwork, you will know what has kept me from my studio.

Friday, July 6, 2018

Da Da Da Daaaah

Intemperate, 24"x18", jigsaw reduction woodblock print, available

The print that was in production for 9 months is complete. Soon - next week - it will get all dressed up in a frame and be ready for the Living with Craft exhibit at the League of NH Craftsmen's Annual Fair.

This will be the last large print for a while. I started it on a press with a 24"x48" bed and when I couldn't use that any more, I printed the last few layers by hand with wooden spoons a LOT of elbow grease. 

These prints are too large to dry in the studio. The spare bedroom is littered with drying prints now. (So it isn't a good time to visit.)

Without this print taking up space in my studio and my brain anymore, I feel free to plan new projects.

Some of those are more Wet Dog paintings, some are jigsaw prints that will fit on my press with its 12"x24" bed, and some are more white-lines. 

It is going to be an exciting summer in the studio and I am looking forward to it.

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

A Finished Pumpkin Print

Pumpkin by the Sea, 9"x7", white-line woodcut print, available

The first of two pumpkin blocks in the works this summer is complete.

It is enjoying its view of the calm Atlantic Ocean on a clear, bright day. Certainly, it can see the Isles of Shoals on the horizon. Maybe even parts of the north shore of Massachusetts. 

The granite on which it sits is a bleached pink, speckled with minty green lichen and some grasses stoically growing in cracks.

This image will soon be joined by a second composition of a pumpkin enjoying an ocean view. You will see pictures of that next week.

Until then, stay cool and Happy 4th of July!

Monday, July 2, 2018

Wet Dog in the Sun

Wet Dog in the Sun, oil on canvas, 12"x12", available

Here we have little Measure staring down at me while I paint the ocean. The sun is descending fast, and she's telling me that we should leave soon because it is nearly dinner time. 

Of course, she'll wait for me to finish and pack up - what else can she do? Take the keys and drive herself home?

And she can pass the time by taking another dip in a tide pool, chasing the other Goldens, eating seaweed or ripping a stick into a million pieces - lots to do on the coast of Maine for an adventurous red head.

Plus, I have dog cookies in my pack...

Friday, June 29, 2018

Inspired Pumpkin

Sea Pumpkin, oil on canvas, 10"x11", available

You know that there are two brand new white-line woodcuts this summer. Pumpkins modeled on the edge of the sea for both of these prints.

The first block has already yielded a print - you'll see that very soon. 

Above, you can see the reference for the next white-line woodcut - a plein air painting from York, ME a few years ago. It is coming along quite nicely. Here is a progress photo for you:

The embossed lines in the paper are showing off a bit in this picture. As is the wood grain from the block.

Lots more to print, but I think it will be done in a week or two.

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Another Last Close-up....

...of a different print. It turns out that I finished two prints last week. 

This is the pumpkin print you have been following here on White-line Wednesdays.  

The big reveal of this first print off the new block will be in the newsletter in the next couple of days. It will join the official portraits of the latest Wet Dog painting and Intemperate. Of course, you know by now that if you would like to be on that list (and get a code for free domestic shipping), all you have to do is sign up here.

As I told you last week, four jigsaw prints will be participating in the Living With Craft exhibit at the League of New Hampshire Craftsmen's Annual Fair. 

There will also be a printmaking only exhibit entitled The Newest Work in the upper lodge (conveniently where beer and wine are usually available for purchase).

Which means there is ANOTHER white-line block of a different pumpkin all carved and ready to print so the two prints can hang together in that little show. 

So I better get printing...

Monday, June 25, 2018

Last Close-up

Close-up of the now finished Intemperate

This is just a little peek at the newly completed Intemperate. The whole thing will debut in the newsletter later this week.

Then, you can see it here and on the website. But you can also see it in person in August at the League of New Hampshire Craftsmen's Annual Fair. It will be hanging there with three more of my print in the Living with Craft exhibit. 

But you already know all this because you read last Friday's post right?

Before it is ready for the exhibit (or shipping, should you want your very own), it needs to dry. Then it will need a frame. 

It isn't the only new print around here, either. I'll reveal some new news on Wednesday!


Friday, June 22, 2018

Living with Craft Line Up

 Vanguard, 16"x24, jigsaw reduction woodblock print

The League of New Hampshire's Annual Craftsmen's Fair is coming soon - August 4 - 12 this year. 

It is still at Mount Sunapee Resort in Newbury, NH.

In lieu of a booth, some of my prints will be in the Living with Craft Exhibit on the upper floor of the  lower lodge - got that? (The link shows one of my prints in a past exhibit - House on Ocean Point.)

I love the annual exhibit because the designer takes items from all categories of crafts from different artists and creates lovely room vignettes. 

It shows you that by collecting things that you love, regardless of style or color or shape, you can create a cohesive look in your space.

In this post, you can see three prints that will be in the exhibit in 2018.  Since these are limited edition prints, you don't have to wait for the exhibit to get one for yourself. They are available on my website - just click on the titles for more information. Or you can always contact me.

The fourth print that will be there, Intemperate, will be revealed later this summer.

Green Wave, 6"x8", jigsaw reduction woodblock print

Appledore Evening, 6"x8", jigsaw reduction woodblock print

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Next Phase for the Pumpkin Print

Newest white-line woodcut print in progress.

What's new?  The purple shadows are darker and the pink granite color was just added.

Pink rocks next to an orange pumpkin with purple shadows, and minty lichen all next to a field of marine blues (coming next)? 

Yes, please. Hopefully this proof will be all printed next week.

Monday, June 18, 2018

Wet Dogs Wrapped Up

Wet Dogs at Dawn, digital print getting ready for a journey to a new home.

Say you really like the Wet Dog paintings, but you didn't buy your favorite before someone else did.**    There are digital versions of most of the paintings available on the website

When you buy one, it will come in a box, wrapped in bubble wrap and colored tissue paper with a receipt and a thank you note - like the one pictured above that was just sent far away from its New Hampshire birthplace.

Your package won't smell like a Wet Dog - that is one advantage the 2-D versions of pups have over real ones. 

**They might have gotten to it first because they get the newsletter and saw it before you knew it existed. Sign up here to see the newest paintings before anyone else.**

Friday, June 15, 2018

Drawing Exercise

Sometimes, it is good to get in some old fashioned practice. When one doesn't want to hire a model (or the two furry ones on retainer won't stay still), there is always one's foot. 

In a shoe.

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Beginning of a Pumpkin Print

Close-up of a pumpkin print in progress

As you might remember from last week, this image will be a pumpkin on a rock with a fairly calm sea behind it.

In this photo, you can see where the paper has embossed into the block a little. That is where the white lines will be.

Just adding ink and rubbing with a spoon a few gross of times and we'll have a finished print. Maybe by next week. But maybe not.

Monday, June 11, 2018

A few weeks ago...

Close-up of a painting of Measure in progress

This painting was started back in April. The entire painting is 12"x12". This little bit of it represents about a 4"x4" section.

The painting is done now and signed and ready to come back here for its official photograph. Once it dries, newsletter subscribers will see it in their monthly and then I can show it to everyone else.

I am sharing this now because I like remembering how simple these things start - just big shapes and limited colors. It elevates the subject of a puppy gazing down at me wondering if she'll get a treat to a higher level of sophistication.

Friday, June 8, 2018

Just the Sun. A Few Times.

Close-up of a painting in progress

There is a dog in this painting, but not in this view of it. 

Sometimes we enjoy a bright sunrise reflecting on the swirling surface of the ocean.

Even though the water seems to be on fire, I bet it was cold. As we've discussed, the dogs never care about that.

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Black Lines for White-lines

Here is the drawing for the next white-line print. It has been transferred to a wooden block and the carving is almost complete. 

Next Wednesday, you should get to see some color, but if you can't wait, here is the reference painted a few years ago on site:

Pumpkin Perch, 20"x16", oil on gessoed board, available

Monday, June 4, 2018

Last Open Studio in Lowell

#334 in the Western Avenue Studio building in Lowell, MA

Last Saturday was the monthly Open Studio in the WAS building in Lowell, MA. It turns out, it was my final Open Studio there.

Leases are renewed in July and I have decided not to stay. The reasons are mostly boring, but the hour drive from New Boston to Lowell is the main one.

It was an educational few weeks. Mostly, I learned that I don't need to go anywhere to create. I like working there - the light is perfect is for painting. But I can make it perfect here too.

Also, it will soon be time to paint more outside and there aren't enough days in the week to paint in Lowell, print in New Boston and plein air paint.

There are still some paintings to finish up there, though, so I won't completely move out for a couple more weeks. 

Friday, June 1, 2018

Jump the Waves

Wet Dogs Jump the Waves, oil on canvas, 12"x12"

Here we have the newest Wet Dog Painting. These two crazy pups always raced right into the surf, regardless of the low temperatures. 

There might not even been a ball out there yet - swimming and being wet was always enough.

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

The First of the Pumpkins

Pumpkins and Buoys, white-line woodcut print, 10"x8"

Remember this print from last summer? If not, you can see some progress shots (and some other pumpkins) here.

It isn't time for pumpkins yet, of course, but I have been thinking about them anyway. This print might need some companions. 

There is a small pile of plein air pumpkin studies here in the studio that are saying they want to become white-line prints. Who am I to deny them?

So White-line Wednesday will go orange for a bit while we indulge some paintings by making them into prints.

Sort of like Pinocchio becoming a real boy. But painting compositions turning into prints instead.

Monday, May 28, 2018

The Ink Goes On

Ink for Intemperate

These are only three of the seven colors laid out all at once for the (probably) final layer of the large print, Intemperate.

Soon, we will all get to see the whole thing, done and ready to go into the Living with Craft exhibit at the League of NH Craftsmen's Fair in August.

Friday, May 25, 2018

Start of Summer

Close-up of some Wet Dogs in progress.

These dogs celebrate the beginning of summer with a jump in the ocean.

This picture is a small section of a 12"x12" oil painting that is now done. Newsletter subscribers are going to see the completed painting in its entirety very soon. If you would like to be on the list, click here and sign up.

Or you can come to the Western Avenue Studios on June 2 between noon and 5 pm and stop by #334. This painting will be hanging there with its mates and some prints too.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

White of the Paper

Intemperate, jigsaw reduction woodblock print in progress

You have seen a few close-ups of this print lately. In this one, you can really see how the white of the paper works with all the inky layers around it.

This is the effect I was looking for all along. We still have to see how the whole image comes together. The goal was to finish them by the end of May and it looks like that will happen. You will be the second to know.*

*The first to know are email subscribers. You can become one here.

Monday, May 21, 2018

Making a Splash

Close-up of a painting in progress

This painting has three dogs in it. This is Coast, running through the water in a tide pool.

You will have to wait to see the others. 

Unless you come to the Open Studio on June 2 from 12- 5 at the Western Avenue Studios, #334, in Lowell, MA. That would be another way to see the whole thing...

Friday, May 18, 2018

Shapes and Textures

Intemperate, jigsaw reduction woodblock print in progress

These close-up photos allow you to see some of the textures inherent in working with wood.

Ink does its own thing sometimes. We let it because sometimes what the ink offers is more interesting than what we might have thought to do. Shapes in nature are rarely consistent in color and value - here we have some sparkly lights showing up in some places and some gravely darks in others.

Often looks like what light looks like when it hits water and rocks, don't you think?

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Rule Breaking

Intemperate, jigsaw reduction woodblock print, still in progress

It is white-line Wednesday and this is a jigsaw. But one of the reasons I wanted to make jigsaws after printing white-line woodcuts for a bit was because I knew there would be a white-line element to the jigsaws. 

When the block is cut into pieces, some material is lost to sawdust. That means that sometimes, the pieces don't snug right up together perfectly all the time. The key is to make that part of the design. For example, in the photo above, you can see that the brown rock shape and the green ink directly to the right of it have a varied white line in the middle of them. 

In this print, I wanted to really push the white of the paper. I carved a lot of wood the very first layer.

As the print progressed, it seemed like there was too much white. I was hoping I would get over that feeling, but I never did.

After months of thinking about it (ok, fretting, really), I have decided to add more blocks and print more shapes. That makes this print not a strict reduction, but who really cares. 

There isn't a "Reduction Division" of the Printmaking Police. There are a lot of busy-body types who love to geek out over printmaking terms who get a bit heavy-handed at times. There are juried events that might take definitions very seriously and if they say "Reductions Only", this print would be excluded. But none of these folks wear badges and none of them are the Boss of Me. 

Which is why I am adding blocks to my reduction. And liking it. You saw a close-up shot of the foreground greens the other day because I really like how that is turning out.

Other areas that changed in this layer are in the rocks - I planned all along to add a dark brown to the top area of that shape and a middle grey to the bottom of it.

The bummer is that I still think there is too much white..... So I am adding more blocks. 

Don't tell me I can't. It is my print and I'll add blocks if I want to.
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