I have been very fortunate in my life to have some excellant art teachers. Printmaking instructors, I have found, are the most open and free with their knowledge and are EXCITED to have someone eager to learn printmaking techniques.
Last weekend I had the opportunity to spend in an advanced Moku Hanga workshop with Mary Brodbeck in Kalamazoo. (I also spent a week with her this past summer at Kendall School of Art and Design and couldn't learn enough!) I could have spent this past weekend just studying her work! She is an extraordinary Japanese woodblock printmaker & teacher and I would sit at her feet for a year if I could. She also shares my love of our great state of Michigan and we talked about places of beauty and adventure that we have and would like to visit.
Yesterday I spent the day with the art students of Owosso High School. Printmaking is not something usually taught in school art programs, beyond basic linoprints, because of the expense. So I gave them an overview of printmaking techniques - etching, collograph, drypoint, monoprints, reduction and Japanese woodblock. For the advanced class I demonstrated the basics of Japanese woodblock printmaking.
If you are in class there has to be an assignment, right? I gave them all a small block of shina, generously donated by McClain's Printmaking Supply. We are going to do a "puzzle" print: self portrait, eyes only, in their own style, printed with black sumi.
They are very excited about this project and I will post their print here when it is done the week after Thanksgiving.