The Print Making Process
A short video on tips and techniques. View it on YouTube
How the project began
I began a joint project with John McWade and Michael Bell (not a relative, alas). John is an internationally known typographer/print designer and Michael comes from that very musical Methodist family, the Thornleys.
It's now finished. It was a delight to work with John who brings such wisdom and expertise. The project arose out of a cryptic challenge where I decided that in this instance it be would be very special if the typographer could match the fall of the voice on the ear, to the fall of the text on the page. Mr McWade -we barely know each other - rose to the challenge, and I thank him very much indeed. Michael, whom I've known since he was a teen and who played occasionally at Trinity-at-Waiake, my old stomping ground, had exactly the right musical instance for the occasion.
Origin of the woodcuts
Now I've chosen to share not only the video but its context/origin in terms of the MDF woodcuts also.
I had been working last year on the sequence, originally illustrating the Cross in Central Otago. They were based on a photograph by Micah Marty twenty plus years ago. He and his famous theologian brother Martin Marty wrote The Promise of Winter based on the experience of that season in the small American shaker/quaker communities, their land and buildings and arts and crafts. As Micah noted, winter clarifies, reveals, covers and strengthens. My woodcuts were based on that sequence.
Our Christian task in the days ahead
In this Covid-19 crisis it's essential that our faith and our theological activity does exactly the same. We must
How we express our Christianity can't be in terms of the same-old same-old.
A deeper reflection
The Housman poem is the work of a young atheist, not an amiable Christian. Yet I feel it is a far better crafting of life's realities, life's truths, than many prayers, liturgies and sermons. What do you think? Here, then, a starting point for a deeper reflection on who we are and what we are to make of our lives, lived under the relentless rhythms of nature's days and nights, delights, dangers and deaths.
The 2 MDF plates, cleaned up
More prints and printmaking on David Bell's profile page here.