Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Night Sky

Back in December, I was on a camping trip in the Oregon woods. The fog had cleared for a short time, and I did some experimental sketching of the Douglas fir trees silhouetted against the night sky. Dilute white acrylic paint called out the faint glow of the sky in contrast to the shapes of the dark trees.
I'd been playing with the idea of pursuing the ideas in this sketch more, but it was just simmering on the back burner for quite a while. Then, a colleague of mine at work, who worked at the museum's planetarium, announced that she was moving out of town. Clearly, the starry sky would be an appropriate theme for her going away card, right?
Revisiting and adapting the shapes from the earlier sketches, with gold paint-pen on black paper. The "boldly" caption is, of course, a Star Trek joke--boldly going where no-one has gone before, right?
For the final version, I hand drew the stars with a white colored pencil on the blue paper, stippling away in a coffee shop one Saturday afternoon. I carved the design of words and tree into a linoleum block print, and mixed a "nearly black" ink out of blue, purple, and green. The joy of sunny and dry weather in Portland--the ink dries faster that it would have in winter!

I printed a few variants on these, and they'll be wandering through the postal system over the next few days. My planetarium friend enjoyed her hand-delivered copy too--hers was extra special, with a hint of glitter. Yay.


  1. Comedian Henry Cho has a skit about that phrase from Star Trek (http://youtu.be/U7_3xxQXgFs). Cracks me up.

    Really fun to see the progression from sketch to finished work!

    1. Look forward to watching that, thanks for the link, T!