Friday, January 25, 2013

Nova Scotia

Nova Scotia
I've made another in my provincial series. The shape of Nova Scotia is covered with its provincial symbols: the osprey and the mayflower. The block was inked 'à la poupée' (with different colours, green, pinks, yellow and gray-brown, in different areas) and printed by hand on lovely Japanese kozo (or mulberry) paper. Each print is 23.5 cm by 31.8 cm (9.25" by 12.5"). The print is one of a variable edition of eight.

This print was troublesome for me. Firstly, I had the opposite issue as with Saskatchewan. As all schoolchildren know Saskatchewan is the hardest to spell, easiest to draw. I mean, it's basically a rectangle. Sure, Canada is so large that you can see the small-circle curvature fo the latitudes marking the north and south boundaries, and there's been a correction to the original purely rectalinear area, and there are some notable lakes, but basically, its shape is so simple that the viewer might not recognize it was a map. Nova Scotia and for that matter, the remaining Maritime provinces, PEI and Newfoundland and Labrador are so irregularly shaped that it's a challenge to avoid having the shape of the map dominate the design. How was I to squish an Osprey into that space, unless I incresed the scale, or, my solution, I did not attempt to show the entire animal.

Lastly, the inks themselves gave me trouble. Inking 'à la poupée' is an acquired skill, but I think that the other trouble was the dryness of the air. It's pretty cold out there and no amount of ink retarder seemed able to keep my inks nice and viscous today. But, here we are. Province print number 8 with two more provinces and three territories to go.

I was tempted to sneak the Bluenose in there, but that would just confuse matters.

Maybe it's appropriate to make a Nova Scotia print on Robbie Burns Day.

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