Back in the Groove

Tortoise - wood engraving

Tortoise - wood engraving

Last week, I was ready to give up the cyber world entirely, thanks to some anonymous yobbos out there whose very existence seems to be to cause mischief for others.  There’s no doubt the Internet is an amazing thing.  But why folk spend their time and occupy their precious brain cells in creating cyber diseases, completely baffles me.

Thank the Universe for a patient and knowledgeable son, who spent his equally precious free time in sorting out my machine.

Like the little bloke pictured, I’m still a bit nervous about poking my head out of my shell, though have to admit it is good to be up and running once more.

An upside to having enforced downtime was more hours in the studio.  After an initial session, learning the basics of wood engraving with artist Rhyll Plant, it took me ten days to find the courage to make the first mark on the wood.  The super-smooth slice of tree was so perfect, I was hesitant to deface it.  After cutting the first groove, it was less scary.  After several marks, I was hooked.

Okay, so my first attempt isn’t perfect.  My little tortoise still needs a bit more work, more highlights to give him depth and dimension.  Even so, there was a sense of anticipation followed by pleasure at seeing what he truly looked like when run through the press.

I realise I still have miles and miles to go with this new art form, but the journey is proving to be exhilarating.  Added to the thrill of learning wood engraving, is knowing that in my own small way I am also preserving the past, in carrying on an old skill.

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2 Responses to Back in the Groove

  1. He looks great! I know how that blank canvas, wood, eraser or whatever is scary but you got over it and have a really unique piece now.

  2. hatchery says:

    Thanks, Timaree. Now staring at another blank chunk of wood. Maybe it won’t be such a worry this time.

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