My last post that "over the next two weeks I'll be moving" has turned out to be overly optimistic. After five weeks my presses, cutters, and tables are only now able to be safely uncovered. The A/C and exhaust are connected, the electric wired and sub-meter installed, the cutter squared, the presses leveled. The final finish—the new espresso machine—was installed yesterday morning. But it has been a difficult process. My self-image erodes almost instantly during a move. Seeing my presses under drop cloths drives me a little nuts, and even with nothing to print I feel like I'm being locked out of something. Sitting at my table waiting for contractors to show up, driven to distraction by the heat, unable to work but unwilling to leave the workers alone with my equipment, it all combines to work me increasingly into a lather. Then the drop cloths come off and everything's fine, just like that.
A new wrinkle has come up, though. While Annie and I were on our vacation a couple of weeks ago I learned that my friends the Artale's, who have made my film for the last ten years, are moving studios next week and will no longer be making film. (Film is necessary for me to make the plates that I print from.) Luckily, the Artales are giving me all of the equipment required to make the film myself: two very old Mac computers, a laser printer the size of a Karmann ghia that exposes the film, and a large processor that requires a water hook-up for temperature control. The newly outfitted studio, of course, has no water but that can be fixed. The exciting part is that once all of this is figured out I will be completely in control of my work process for the first time, from design through printing everything will happen in one space.
All of these machinations have made working on Interstices & Intersections difficult but work progresses all the same. Most of the writing is now complete and nearly all the drawings are sketched and painted, if not yet drawn in separation. The first half of the custom Twinrocker paper for the deluxe edition will be shipped to me tomorrow so with any luck I'll be proofing next week and editioning by mid-August. Over the last couple of days I have been working on three of the more challenging prints for the book: a six color map of my childhood neighborhood, a four color drawing of three-leaf clover, and a floating chambered nautilus shell. The shell will require roughly ten colors but I will not be able to tell for certain until I get further into proofing. Attached are the original rough pencil sketch of the shell and a shot of my work table with actual shell, photographs, and a separation drawing. In the lower right corner you can see some of my color notations for one part of the shell print. The line that begins with "pppp pin" stands for pale pale pale pale pink, meaning a pink glaze composed of tint base with the smallest touch of pyrrol red. This glaze is meant to work together with one of yellow and one of gray to give warmth and depth to the darker sections of the shell.