Studio Visit: Jerry Walters WOOD Cut PRINTs

Phil and I went home (Missouri) for Christmas. While we were there, Phil's sister Ellie, reached out to a local Farmington Artist and arranged a studio showing of his work.

Jerry Walters' studio is an addition built onto his home. It faces south and east so the light always filters in, even on the cloudiest day.

It was rainy and cold on the day we visited but just look at all of that light! A dream.

He was so kind. He not only showed us his finished prints but took the time to share a bit of his process, show us the tools he uses, and the key to a few of his prints. Keys are the 'negative' of a woodblock print- or the thing that gets carved. All of his work is large and he carves everything on plywood.

When he executes the actual print, he inks the key and then sets rice paper on top. He rubs the whole key surface with a wooden spoon (!) to get the print. Who knew wooden spoons were so versatile?

If he's adding color to a print, he takes the initial key print and then carves the areas where he wants to see color. You can see the color key for the this block below.

This, to me, would seem to be the most challenging part. Making a replica of a drawing, in NEGATIVE, has to be such a brain teaser. 

Here is the end result. She's the one I ended up buying. 

I really loved meeting the artist and learning about an art process I was unfamiliar with. If you get the opportunity to visit an artist's studio- do it!