Whale Tail 2, Linoleum Block Print

matted framed block print

Whale Tail 2, linocut © B.E. Kazmarski

I love the photos of whale breaches, but I just wanted to find the essence of the moment, just the whale’s tail, the water and the sky. “Whale Tail 2″ is a simplified, iconic image of a whale’s tail breaching the waves with the clouds over the water in the background.

It’s a tiny linoleum block print in black on white rice paper with a blue marble acid-free mat and a deep slate blue frame with a rustic edge. The art size is 2″ x 4″, the frame size is 7″ x 9”.

This print is part of a series inspired when I was reading articles about whales. I had always admired the little illustrations I found in some of my books, just tiny images that said so much. Most illustrations in older books were etchings or relief prints of some sort, and as I studied those I found ideas blooming in my own imagination to use what I’d found.

“Whale Tail 1” and “Puget Sound” complete this set. The frames I had formerly used on these are no longer available, and 7″ x 9″ is no longer a standard size, so I’m featuring this one last framed print from that set. I’ll be printing more with new frames soon.

Block printing is a technique wherein the artist carves the surface of a piece of linoleum, leaving raised areas which will become the image. Ink is rolled onto these raised areas, then a piece of paper is pressed against the block and when it’s lifted away the ink remains, leaving the image on the paper.

All of the “Whale Tail” series are printed in black on white rice paper, and I have added watercolor enhancements to some individual prints and sets, adding blue to the sky, for instance.

You can find this set of prints in my Etsy shop, or if you are local to me I actually have these on display in my shop in Carnegie, in the back room at Carnegie Antiques, 423 West Main Street.

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