About this print
I’ve created this limited edition woodblock print of irises, by individually printing it by hand onto Japanese Kanoko paper. The design is based on a beautiful photograph of irises taken by my Dad on a visit to France.
Japanese cutting knives, chisels and gouges were used to carve into pieces of flat, smooth wood (in this case shina ply) to create the printing blocks. For this design there were 17 individually carved blocks. I printed a different colour from each of these blocks using pure pigment powders ground and mixed with water and rice paste. During the printing process, I apply ink to a block, and then lay the paper onto it. Next, I press on the back of the paper using a Japanese hand-printing press called a baren. Each piece of paper in the edition receives an impression from each of the 17 blocks.
In order to make sure all those layers print in the correct position on the paper, I use registration marks. These are notches I’ve carved into the corner and along one edge of each of the blocks. In this way, I can achieve the variety and depth of colour in the final print. This is a limited edition print, meaning I made just 70 of this design from these blocks. I have individually numbered, dated and signed each of the prints.
Every print in the edition is made in the same way, but each time I ink and press the block slightly differently. This results in a succession of seemingly identical but actually unique prints. Each and every one is an individual, hand crafted work of art.
This limited edition woodblock print of Irises is one of several featuring purple flowers. If you like this one, you might also be interested in Wisteria, or Olearia Semidentata. You might also like a smaller, much simpler version of this composition – White Irises.
When the print is finished, I blind print my chop seal and signature seal along the bottom, as well as signing and dating the print.
Print size is 5.5″ x 11″ (14cm x 28cm) approx.
The print comes mounted and ready to frame, with double bevel-cut mount – overall size is 12″ x 18″ (30cm x 45cm) approx.
I have stretch-mount the print onto conservation backing board. I also attach an information sheet explaining how the print was made on the reverse.
The print comes packaged in a crystal clear cellophane bag. I send prints in a board-backed envelope by Royal Mail.