Today's postings

  1. [Baren 32715] Bevel in the detail (Tom Kristensen)
  2. [Baren 32716] Re: Carving tools advice (Tiberiu Chelcea)
  3. [Baren 32717] Re: Baren Digest (old) V38 #3780 ("Dick and Marilynn Smith")
  4. [Baren 32718] Re: Carving tools advice ("Maria Arango")
  5. [Baren 32719] Re: Hangi-to is the go (Julio.Rodriguez #
  6. [Baren 32720] woodburnig tool ("hanna_platt #")
  7. [Baren 32721] Re: woodburnig tool (Charles Morgan)
  8. [Baren 32722] Baren Member blogs: Update Notification (Blog Manager)
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Message 1
From: Tom Kristensen
Date: Sat, 27 Jan 2007 01:12:58 +1100
Subject: [Baren 32715] Bevel in the detail
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Mark asks about which side of the hangi-to to use in cutting. I use
both sides equally, but I use the flat side to follow the line. To
create a bevelled cut it is necessary to lean the blade over at the
required angle. This tilt of the blade helps to see the line you are
following. The wrist holding the knife and the thumb guiding the
blade are all clear of the tip following the line. To clear the cut
and make the V shaped trench I turn my wrist and come in holding the
blade just outside of vertical. Because this second cut is made with
the bevel of the blade the result is an equal angle to each side of
the cut. This second action is more quick and powerful compared than
the first, but the cut is harder to control. Where space is tight
between lines I do occasionally bend the rules and use this second
cut to clear up to another line.

In Tokuriki's handbook he mention carvers who tackle an entire block
without rotating it once. This means that they must have used both
sides of the blade, unless they were ambidextrous and had two knives
- not impossible.

Tom in Australia

PS I confess I have used a dremel thingy to clear a multitude of 1mm
holes, and it is quicker than the knife, but less satisfying. It's
nice to develop carving skill and give the print a carved syntax.
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Message 2
From: Tiberiu Chelcea
Date: Fri, 26 Jan 2007 06:37:49 -0800 (PST)
Subject: [Baren 32716] Re: Carving tools advice
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Thanks again. Both Terry and Mark have mentioned the wood they're using. Jelutong is speciality item here in US, very hard to obtain, and did not work up the courage and extra $ to try cherry. I've used pine, poplar, shina plywood in the past, but each had its own problems (poplar too hard to cut, cutting pine across grain is a pain, and shina is just too scarily easy to cut and splinter); now, I'm using just birch plywood, it's plenty available, and quite cheap. However, in the couple of books I've been using for learning woodcut printing, birch is pretty low on the list of woods good for woodcut printing. As I said, I really like it, but am wondering whether there's something that I'm missing here, something that makes birch inferior to even pine and poplar.


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Message 3
From: "Dick and Marilynn Smith"
Date: Fri, 26 Jan 2007 08:48:06 -0800
Subject: [Baren 32717] Re: Baren Digest (old) V38 #3780
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Great tip on how to carve out type and other areas that might be similiar.
I say listen to those who have been around doing this for a lot of years.
They will not send you in the wrong direction. Pry??? I would not pry with
my hanga knife, if the area does not pop out with the cut than you have to
clear it with a tool designed for that. Scoring ciricles also sounds like a
very good idea!!
Bobbi, I do undersatnd the problem with hands. I really have to pace my
carving time and enjoy tools that are easier on the hands. I just like the
hands on feeling that that knife gives me. You do have to go slow and be
cautious. The Japanese are patient people. It is time consuming and takes
patience to carve out details with a knife, but the lines are so nice!

I am enjoying this interaction and information. Thanks to all of you who
give so freely.
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Message 4
From: "Maria Arango"
Date: Fri, 26 Jan 2007 08:13:47 -0800
Subject: [Baren 32718] Re: Carving tools advice
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Here's my personal take on woods:

I now use cherry almost exclusively. I buy in bulk once a year or so. I'm
licking my chops at the moment over my newly acquired pile of cherry.
Going "back" to birch seems like regressing; I invariably miss the toughness
of cherry and its ability to withstand all my experimenting without
splintering or crumbling. Plank maple is just as available as birch plywood,
although hardly mentioned as a woodcut suitable wood. I do admit that birch
is very easy to carve, but...
Having said that, I dont' think there is a right or wrong wood for the task,
as I have seen some outstanding work on all types of wood.

Incidentally, same with detail carving. I use 1mm v and u chisels, 1mm and
2mm hangi-to's, rotary tools with dental drills and x-acto knife, depending
on what effect I want. I also use my wood engraving tools on plank cherry
for across the grain cutting. The hangi-to and x-acto knife seem to yield
the cleanest results for very small details, although I hardly ever have the
patience to use them. Life's too short, I guess, and I still have 751
woodcuts to go.

Just my 2 chavos

Maria Arango
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Message 5
From: Julio.Rodriguez #
Date: Fri, 26 Jan 2007 13:55:47 -0600
Subject: [Baren 32719] Re: Hangi-to is the go
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There is an additional entry in the encyclopedia that Dave added regarding
the Hangi-to....for those keen in using this tool and getting the most use
out of it it is a good read:

This one on sharpening stones is also a good one.

thanks....Julio Rodriguez (Skokie, Illinois)
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Message 6
From: "hanna_platt #"
Date: Fri, 26 Jan 2007 16:25:43 -0500 (EST)
Subject: [Baren 32720] woodburnig tool
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Hello all,
I just use a cheap craft store wood burning tool. I have one photo of the "any excuse will serve a tyrant" block in progress. the brown lines are the burned lines. the black is my drawing. I did not carve or burn the lettering. that is a photocopy transfer. just to much of a bother for me to try to carve. i used a gouge to clear the open areas. seems like this would be a good tool for a white line print.
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Message 7
From: Charles Morgan
Date: Fri, 26 Jan 2007 14:16:12 -0800
Subject: [Baren 32721] Re: woodburnig tool
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Thanks, Viza. I found that to be very interesting indeed!!!

Cheers .... Charles
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Message 8
From: Blog Manager
Date: 27 Jan 2007 04:55:16 -0000
Subject: [Baren 32722] Baren Member blogs: Update Notification
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This is an automatic update message being sent to [Baren] by the forum blog software.

The following new entries were found on the listed printmaker's websites during the past 24 hours. (28 sites checked, five minutes before midnight Eastern time)


Site Name: Belinda Del Pesco Fine Art Blog

Author: bdelpesco
Item: Watercolor: Map Reader

Author: bdelpesco
Item: Monotype & Colored Pencil: Santa Monica House


Site Name: VIZArt

Author: Viza Arlington
Item: Political exchange print


Site Name: Phare-Camp Art Journal

Author: Phare-Camp
Item: Illustration Friday-Red


[Baren] members: if you have a printmaking blog (or a website with a published ATOM feed), and wish it to be included in this daily checklist, please write to the Baren Blog Manager at:

For reference, sites/blogs currently being checked are: