I came to printmaking through the back door of photography. I include Imogen Cunningham, Edward Weston and Ansel Adams as strong influences on my work. All three were members of Group f/64 whose photographs were characterized by maximum image sharpness of both foreground and distance. The group’s work celebrated the beauty inherent in landscapes, plants, found objects and the figure. F/64 also promoted the use of straight photographic techniques without special manipulation in the darkroom. I embrace many of these principles as an intaglio printmaker using traditional methods and tools.
As a student printmaker I was introduced to the work of Martin Lewis. Lewis’s prints are a celebration of light and texture. Using the most primary of printmaking methods (lots of drypoint), Lewis was able to express the delicacy of backlit textiles, detail within shadows and reflective surfaces. His ability to suggest facial features and emotion with a similar light touch both inspires and challenges me.
Studying the early prints of Jim Dine motivates me to be less reverent and restrained in my mark making. His work has an expressive, energetic looseness that remains an elusive goal for me. As I move forward in creating prints I aspire to combine the delicacy of Lewis, the energy of Dine and the technical honesty of Cunningham, Weston and Adams.
I would be remiss if I didn’t mention Gene Flores. It was his suggestion to try printmaking that started my education as an intaglio printmaker. It is his example of productivity and consistently high quality of work that challenges me to move forward and try harder.