Home Studio: September 28th

I am nearing the end of the first month of my alternate teaching schedule with KVCC. The alternate teaching schedule is allowing me to not teach the fall semester. I have been working only on art related things – which is really wonderful. One thing that has surprised me, though, is the time I must spend doing marketing,  communications and networking. I usually do this in the early morning and sometimes in the evening. Regarding the marketing of my work, I have been fortunate to find an online source for a web gallery to sell my work, Artsicle. Again I am surprised at how much time and effort it actually takes to do what is needed to make the web gallery functional. It is an ongoing process. This is the link to my site:

I also have joined Linkedin and have been able to reconnect with many individuals I worked with before I started teaching at KVCC.

I’m enrolled in a Lithography class at the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts (KIA) and really enjoying it. The class size is very small, only 5 students, and the printmaking lab is great. The KIA is only a couple blocks from my own studio which makes it easy to get to. The lab is available anytime I want to walk over and work.

In order to make the best use my time in this class I have been researching the look and feel of black lines drawn with a litho crayon. From my research I realized early on that I needed to learn to simplify my line work for my lithography class . . .

Research Image

Research Image

Research Image

Research Image

Research Image

Research Image by Arthur Rackham

So far I have found that I surprisingly like drawing with a litho pencil on my aluminum plates. I have finished one drawing and will be printing it during the next class session . . . we’ll see how it turns out. I’m well prepared for a steep learning curve. While researching I came across this . . .

Learning curve of drawing with a litho crayon . . .
This info from Van Gogh’s letter to his brother Theo:

When I made the lithographs, it struck me that the lithographic crayon was very pleasant material, and l thought, I’ll make drawings with it.
However, there is one drawback which you will understand – as it is greasy, it cannot be erased in the usual way; working with it on paper, one even loses the only thing with which one can erase on the stone itself, namely the scraper – which cannot be used strongly enough on the paper because it cuts through it.

But it occurred to me to make a drawing first with carpenter’s pencil and then to work in and over it with lithographic crayon, which (because of the greasiness of the material) fixes the pencil, a thing ordinary crayon does not do, or, at least, does very badly. After doing a sketch in this way, one can, with a firm hand, use the lithographic crayon where it is necessary, without much hesitation or erasing. So I finished my drawings pretty well in pencil, indeed, as much as possible. Then I fixed them, and dulled them with milk. And then I worked it up again with lithographic crayon where the deepest tones were, retouched them here and there with a brush or pen, with lampblack, and worked in the lighter parts with white body colour.

Litho of Trees by Vincent VanGogh

Litho of Trees by Vincent VanGogh


Below are my attempts at drawings that will be suitable for lithography:


Little Girl001

This is a pencil drawing I produced many years ago, I have redrawn it on an aluminum plate with litho pencils and have added a tusche wash in the background. I’ll try to remember to take a photo of the plate before it is etched and printed so I can post it on this blog.

Olive Tree

Olive Tree


This is an ink drawing purposely made very linear. My desire is to recreate this on an aluminum plate with autographic ink and tusche. I doubt if I will be able to reproduce all of the line work on the aluminum plate. I, also, intend to use this image for a dry point engraving I will be doing,


This drawing started out being very linear, as you see it started out as a graphite drawing. I then thought I would do an ink version . . . I got a little carried away and started to add a lot of value (see image below). When I showed it to my litho instructor she commented that it could still make a good litho if I reproduced it with autographic ink on a litho stone instead of an aluminum plate.


I continued with the drawing and I feel I have reached the point of no return (see below). There is so much value that it would take hours to reproduce this onto a plate with autographic ink. I literally would have to redraw the complete drawing on the litho stone. I’m thinking I will try to do a litho based off the first graphite drawing.


I will continue to finished this value drawing but I will probably use it for something other than lithography. When doing the drawing I was very happy with the variations of texture I was able to get.

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