Monday, June 23, 2008

Black Bear Song

Black Bear Singing in the Dead of Night
6" X 12" woodcut

Stuffed full of suet and sunflower seeds from the Blacks', the Snows', and the Moores' bird feeders, this bear has got plenty to sing about. He must still be digesting all those high-calorie treats because he hasn't made any repeat visits to our feeders.

[I spoke too soon! Last night at 7:00, Keith Snow called to say he'd just scared the bear out from under his bird feeders. Had he come down to our place? Lo and behold he had! There he was, right under our feeders. Tom, Kinsey, and I all got a good gander before he galloped away, past our vegetable garden (He didn't stop to check the gate this time) and through the woods to the Blacks' feeders. I called Anne to warn her. She almost got a photo of him, but the flash reflected off the window screens. All our bird feeders came inside for the night!]

This is my biggest woodcut to date. I carved it out of a piece of birch plywood and printed six copies this morning using a wooden spoon and a lot of elbow grease to hand-rub each print. This is the sixth and best print of the batch. I'm going to have to work on my printing techniques. Maybe get better ink (I'm using Speedball water proof) and better paper (I'm using Sumi "Kozo" plain rice paper). I got both ink and paper cheap at the local craft store. I'll have to go online and order some higher quality stuff. Any recommendations?

I get A Word A Day online, thanks to my tennis buddy Allen. Not only does it teach me a new and useful word each day, but also provides a thoughtful quotation. Today's seems particularly appropriate to my night bear woodcut.


"How hard to realize that every camp of men or beast has this glorious starry firmament for a roof! In such places standing alone on the mountaintop it is easy to realize that whatever special nests we make -- leaves and moss like the marmots and birds, or tents or piled stone -- we all dwell in a house of one room -- the world with the firmament for its roof -- and are sailing the celestial spaces without leaving any track."

-John Muir, naturalist, explorer, and writer (1838-1914)


Melissa & Emmitt said...

hi leslie!
oh! this is an amazing piece! I cannot believe you just started carving not too long ago. It looks like you have always done it!

Abby Creek Art said...

Hi Leslie...I love your new's beautiful!

Thanks so much for your sweet words about Steve. It meant so much. xox