Tag Archives: alchemy

New Alchemical Bride Drawings and Prints

Alchemical Bride Drawing 1, Gouache on toned paper, 12″ x 9″

Carl Jung interpreted the process of alchemy to that of individuation towards the Self, and the Alchemical Bride series takes a look at this alchemy through a feminist lens.

Alchemical Bride Drawing 2, Gouache on toned paper, 12″ x 9″

Maybe it’s the weather, maybe it’s just the transition from teaching to time off, I haven’t much felt like painting in oils. Instead, I have been really enjoying the immediacy of making marks. To me that inevitably leads to drawing and printmaking.

Alchemical Bride Drawing 3, Gouache on toned paper, 12″ x 9″

Drawing with a brush, like in the three pieces above is a nice bridge between the layering of marks and medium that oil painting entails. This is different from engraving, where I take a sharp burin and gouge out the lines that will hold ink.

Alchemical Bride engraving 1

The speed of the mark as well as how hard I press determines the darkness and character of the mark.

Alchemical Bride engraving 2

Other factors that impact the resulting image include the color of ink and the paper used. For example, Alchemical Bride engraving 1 is printed in Lampblack on a rice paper that while very strong, appears fragile due to its thinness and translucency. By contrast, the bright red ink on the warm white paper of ALchemical Bride engraving 2 lends a sense of heat and pressure to the image.

Alchemical Bride engraving 3

In Alchemical Bride engraving 3, I mixed my own red and decided to push the heat of the image further by printing on a yellow/tan paper. I wanted the weight and temperature of the inks and paper to increase the squeezing effect on the smiling bride created by the dark marks of the hair above left and the refractions below right. Squeeze!

Alchemical Bride engraving 4

In this last image, I mixed red and green inks to create a chromatic neutral grey that left a plate tone in each chroma. This way you feel the green and red but don’t really see them creating a tension that alludes to the chemical processes in alchemy.