Good Health

I wish you good health as COVID-19 travels around the world. I and my husband are well at the time I’m writing here in Toronto, Canada. My walks in my neighbourhood help my spirit as I look for signs of spring in the gardens and on the trees. And I do a little drawing many days, some bookkeeping, some cooking and some worrying as I ponder the state of humanity and life on earth.

I thought one of the cards from the original printing of my card deck, Mirrors of the Heart would be apropos right now. If someone you know is ill, may they receive good care and recover soon. And may you be well.

Healthfulness Card from Mirrors of the Heart Card Deck by Lily S. May

BIMPE XI

I’m a very slow packer who ponders every possible way to prevent damage when I’m mailing artwork or the card decks I sell on etsy. But earlier this week I did send 3 relief prints to another international print exhibition–the eleventh Biennial Miniature Print Exhibition. It’s held in Vancouver British Columbia in Canada, with the exhibit traveling to several galleries in western Canada. And it’s a show I’ve entered twice before and have been fortunate to have work accepted both times.

The 3 prints I’ve submitted are ones I’ve shown on the blog before, though in earlier stages. All relate to my concerns about global warming. I’ve printed them in small variable editions and I renamed the first one Facing Extinction because the older title 60% – 40% referred to a statistic about wildlife mortality rates that might not be readily known. I’ll find out in early June if any of the prints are accepted. Here they are:

Facing Extinction, Relief Print ©Lily S. May, 2018
Smarten Up, Relief Print ©Lily S. May, 2018
Mercy in Dire Times, Relief Print ©Lily S. May, 2019

Old Linoleum Blocks

I’ve just sent in my submissions to the Ottawa School of Art Mini Print Juried Exhibition. I’ll see if any of the prints are accepted and will let you know the results.

Meanwhile, I’ve been looking through a box of old lino blocks that I had stored for many years. I had forgotten some of them. Most of these are blocks I began carving but didn’t complete. And because some of them are over 20 years old, I don’t recall specifically why I abandoned them. I know that I went through some physical pain from the repetitive strain of having carved many blocks and that may have influenced my decisions. Around the time some of these were created, I also was involved in creating Mirrors of the Heart–the card deck I made in 1994. So, that likely consumed most of my energy.

Here’s the blocks I like best. I may print them as is, that is–incomplete, to see what they look like.

Drawing and Printing

During December I did a series of pencil drawings of objects around me that I like–many of them handmade and beautiful for their non-perfection. I haven’t drawn with pencil recently and I did so while seeing if I could come up with ideas for a miniature print competition I’m thinking of entering. The ideas for the prints were slow to develop and for a while I thought I might try variations of the drawings as prints. This, however, didn’t happen–I felt too constrained by the small 3″ x 4″ size of the blocks.

What did happen, was that I felt freed up through all the drawing I’d done to come up with some spontaneous images that I’ve developed into prints. They are very unlike the drawings and, in an indirect way, a few of them reflect for me the atmosphere of recent awful world news. I’ve printed the images on Japanese paper and they’re drying now.

Here’s a few of the drawings. I increased the contrast digitally so you can see the lines easier.

And here’s the block prints with titles I’m considering.

Who?:

Then and Now: (Renamed Look Out in February)

The Conductor:

Hard Times:

Wake Up Print

I’ve been working on the block print, Wake Up, that I mentioned in my last post. I wanted to add colour to the image using 2 separate blocks. I decided where I wanted red to appear, but first I needed to make a registration board to align the colours.

I’ve been doing many small prints–4″ x 6″–on a soft eraser-like material that’s 1/4″ thick. So, I designed a board that can help me with those blocks, this print being one of them. Today I took 2 rough proofs to see how things are going. I’ll make a few adjustments to some details, print the image in rough again and, once I like the finished print, I’ll move on to some handmade Japanese paper. Here’s the latest proof.

The Global Climate Strike

Global warming is on my mind every day. It is with me in the art work I do. I tend to do most of my work without a lot of detailed planning because that keeps the process more alive for me. So it’s not that I decide: ok, today I’ll make an image related to climate change. It just shows up repeatedly in the small sketches and doodles I make that turn into the basis of my prints.

The Global Climate Strike is happening this week. Here’s a recent relief print I’ve made on my feelings about human caused climate change and the destruction of nature and here’s a link to the worldwide strike.