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Inevitable by rabid-potato Inevitable by rabid-potato
I wanted to do another woodcut with the same colors as Rebis, and I had an image in my head of moths stuck to tar or sap or molasses that just wouldn't go away.


This print is an attempt at being more subtle about my symbolism instead of just tossing alchemical iconography everywhere...although I do love my alchemical symbols. They aren't going away anytime soon.

6-run reduction woodcut on red oak (delicious texture), 10 1/2"x19", 16 impressions.
©E. Patrician =rabid-potato 2010.
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:iconsandersblack:
sandersblack Featured By Owner Feb 9, 2011  Student Traditional Artist
This piece is just awesome. The colors are great and the wood grain is just perfect. Did you do anything special to get the grain to pop like that?
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:iconrabid-potato:
rabid-potato Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2011   General Artist
Thank you so much!
I enhanced the texture by running a wire bristle barbecue brush with the grain, but most of it is just the wood itself. I've found myself rapidly falling in love with red oak, haha.
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:iconitharu:
itharu Featured By Owner Nov 21, 2010
Exposing the wood texture is something that was really needed for this work to stand out more than it would without it. Excellent work in getting that to show and print.
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:iconrabid-potato:
rabid-potato Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2011   General Artist
Thank you! Red oak is a joy to work with- all I did to enhance the texture was run a wire bristle brush along the grain to bring it out a little.
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:iconwyte-majick:
wyte-majick Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2010  Professional Digital Artist
i like being able to see the texture of the wood in this impression :) It's brilliant!
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:iconrabid-potato:
rabid-potato Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2010   General Artist
Thank you! I definitely want to incorporate the grain of the wood into my work more.
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:icongornikiewicz:
gornikiewicz Featured By Owner Oct 26, 2010
Incredibly good job!
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:iconrabid-potato:
rabid-potato Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2010   General Artist
Thank you so much!
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:iconc-2-158:
C-2-158 Featured By Owner Sep 3, 2010  Student
Beautiful print, flawless registration, well composed.
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:iconrabid-potato:
rabid-potato Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2010   General Artist
Thank you so much!
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:iconaniseshaw:
AniseShaw Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2010  Professional Filmographer
The subtle nature of your imagery in this makes it one of your best pieces. I like it very much, it has a silent, slow feel to it that really tickles my fancy.
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:iconrabid-potato:
rabid-potato Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2010   General Artist
Thank you so much!
I really appreciate that you took the time to leave such a thoughtful comment- I love getting insight into what my work makes people feel.
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:iconaniseshaw:
AniseShaw Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2010  Professional Filmographer
my pleasure!
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:iconautumnembers:
AutumnEmbers Featured By Owner Jul 29, 2010  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This is pretty awesome. =) Though if you wanted to show sap, all I can really see is tar. I think it's because of the colour you chose to represent it, and that makes me think about ubanization v nature, which I'm not sure if you're going for that or not.

Other than that I really enjoy the texture of the piece, the one on the wood and then the wood texture itself that you used to make the print. =)
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:iconrabid-potato:
rabid-potato Featured By Owner Jul 31, 2010   General Artist
Urbanization v. nature, oooh, I like that!
See, that's what I love about hearing other people's interpretations of my work- it doesn't matter if that's what I was going for or not; what really matters is what each person takes away from it using their own experience in their interpretations.

One of my teachers once said that once you create an artwork, it's free, and you can no longer control what other people will think of it or how they will interpret it. I've tried to take that to heart, and even if I think "oh no, that's totally wrong, that's not what I meant at all!", it really isn't wrong. Like when I was working on this one, people were commenting on how topical it was in relation to the Gulf oil spill. And it did fit, oddly enough- even though I'd started the print months before the spill. It doesn't make their interpretations wrong, by any stretch of the imagination.

/essay hahaha
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:iconautumnembers:
AutumnEmbers Featured By Owner Aug 6, 2010  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Yeah, that's true. An artist can't necessarily control what the viewer sees from the work. But if one is trying to express an idea and can use the necessary symbols/technique etc to achieve that, then it's successful I think. Like with your art, even though it wasn't made in response to current events, at that time it was relevant in spite of it, but at the same time it can still stand for what you initially created it for and I think because of that it's successful. =)

I don't mind essays. =D I love talking about art with others haha. It's fun.

Sorry for the delay in reply. I was trying to think about how to frame my response correctly and then I got sidetracked.
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:iconcolourscientist:
colourscientist Featured By Owner Jul 15, 2010
love it. incredible detail!
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:iconrabid-potato:
rabid-potato Featured By Owner Jul 15, 2010   General Artist
Thank you!
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:iconubastyyat:
Ubastyyat Featured By Owner Jul 12, 2010  Hobbyist Digital Artist
The moths are what get me. That centre one in the foreground is just so realistic.
Also, COLOURS YEAAAAHHH!
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:iconrabid-potato:
rabid-potato Featured By Owner Jul 15, 2010   General Artist
ilu. <3
I'm so glad the moths came out well, because I was worried that they looked too light compared to the branch.
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:iconubastyyat:
Ubastyyat Featured By Owner Jul 15, 2010  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Maybe, but I noticed them so thhhhppppttt
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:iconcozyfire:
cozyfire Featured By Owner Jul 10, 2010
!!

Man, this blows me away as a final print. I love how you work with the wood texture so the entire piece has a melty drippy motion to match the tar (also, that tar. That tar eating the little moth on the top and the moth sort of struggling against it - love).

I am out of words this morning, but yeah. This piece is gorgeous and I see why you were pleased about it.
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:iconrabid-potato:
rabid-potato Featured By Owner Jul 15, 2010   General Artist
Thank you so very much! :D

I'm so glad the texture worked with the piece- I was worried that since the wood is SO textured that the texture might overwhelm the images, but I'm glad you don't think so.

The tar is stuck in my brain. Definitely going to do more of these.
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:iconcozyfire:
cozyfire Featured By Owner Jul 17, 2010
Oh, it doesn't overwhelm it at all. I think you used a color that's suitably muted so it doesn't steal the thunder of the main imagery, while still adding something valuable to the composition.

Please do! They're creepy and awesome at the same time :D
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:iconrabid-potato:
rabid-potato Featured By Owner Jul 31, 2010   General Artist
<3
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:iconjujukins:
JuJukins Featured By Owner Jul 10, 2010  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
that's really cool :D
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:iconrabid-potato:
rabid-potato Featured By Owner Jul 15, 2010   General Artist
Thank you!
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:iconmouse2cat:
mouse2cat Featured By Owner Jul 10, 2010
I really really like this print. I think the woodgrain of the block is adds to the imagery without being a distracting element. Woodgrain is something I have been avoiding like the plague with my linocuts but only because I am not patient enough to deal with a wood surface. I think my favorite of your prints are the ones with a more subtle take on the symbolism. It is still there and I don't think you have to worry about it getting missed.
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:iconrabid-potato:
rabid-potato Featured By Owner Jul 15, 2010   General Artist
Thank you so much! I know I keep saying this, but you always leave the best comments.
I suppose I'm trying to be more subtle about the symbolism because it feels...hrm, how to say it...more mature, I guess? I personally like the diagrams and symbols and figures all over the place sort of look, but I also don't want to get stuck in doing the same thing over and over. I'm also trying not to fight the grain of the wood so much, and I hope I'm on the right track with using textured wood like this.

If you're wanting to try wood but don't want it to be too difficult, I'd suggest trying shina. It's kind of expensive, but it's the softest wood I've ever carved and doesn't split nearly as much as oak or cherry or crappy I-have-no-idea-what-this-is plywood (which is what I tend to use).
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:iconmouse2cat:
mouse2cat Featured By Owner Jul 15, 2010
I actually have this piece of shina that I rub against my face from time to time. Like a babies bottom. I don't think you can get shina as big as I like without spending a million jillion dollars for it. I know exactly what you mean about trying to carve crap wood. For the amount of pain you cause yourself the extra $50 is such a small thing in comparison.

Your work seems to touch on nature mythology which is something I am reading about to inform my own work. I am interested in how ancient pagan tree warship still affects culture to this day. I feel like the alchemical symbols are an element that may make your work less accessible for some people. You need to avoid the "I don't know this symbol" walking away reaction. Alchemy is about the ideas of change at it's core, maybe even trying to control changes when they are ultimately outside of human control. Which lends itself nature imagery.

Thanks about the comment thing.
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:iconrabid-potato:
rabid-potato Featured By Owner Nov 6, 2010   General Artist
Mmm, you definitely raise a good point with the whole walking away reaction- I never really thought of it that way before. I'm fascinated by nature mythology as well- what books have you been reading? I've got this massive brick of a book called "The Secret Teachings of All Ages" by Manly P. Hall, and while it's kind of hard to get through, it's got some great ideas.
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:iconmouse2cat:
mouse2cat Featured By Owner Nov 7, 2010
I just finished reading a book called Landscape and Memory by Simon Schama and it was to be fair, an academic tome. But it had some really good moments. It ended up having a more historical perspective than I expected and like all art book a distinct western art emphasis. The forest cathedral was good and the mythology of forest origins. Nature as hostile vs nature as sanctuary. I read the thing at the pool as a lifeguard... Anyhow I can handle a brick if you say it's good. I'll check out your book.

When I look at your work I think about native american myth the most. I don't know if that is the woodcut thing or the slight obscurity of some of your references. But hey I keep watching your prints! :P I am going to go comment on your new print now...
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:iconmechacharibdys:
mechacharibdys Featured By Owner Jul 9, 2010  Professional General Artist
Brilliant use of texture! I've always wanted to try red oak. How's it carve?
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:iconrabid-potato:
rabid-potato Featured By Owner Jul 15, 2010   General Artist
Thank you so much! It's definitely harder than shina, but not as hard as cherry. It tends to split more than either of those, though, so be prepared for some hair-tearing if you're like me and have to have every little detail perfect. If you can just let go and work with the grain and occasional splitting, it's wonderful to carve.
For actual carving, shina is still my favorite, though. It carves so easy it feels like cheating.
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