One of the things I enjoy most in the world is printmaking. It's an opportunity to meld my artistic aspirations, crafting and design. Woodcut is a particularly wonderful medium which I learned to do at the elbow of Martin Mazorra at Parsons. I'm really never happier than when I'm carving blocks.
I just finished a particularly technically challenging project, Ampersand 1. I won't go into detail about why this project was so tough. Suffice it to say that the right ink, the right paper, the right tools really help make a project go better in the end. Once I had those things set up properly, the final printing process went incredibly smoothly, even the registration (how the layers line up) was easy in the end.
The final prints of this run are now up on my site for sale at $45 each including shipping within the US. I hope you'll take a look and consider supporting my art. Thanks!
One of the more annoying things about designing is the pesky clients. Nah, not really. Well, maybe some of the time. But the most demanding client I've ever had is, well, me. I'm hypercritical. Nothing is ever quite perfect enough. I want what I want, but I can't always articulate it in a way that makes designer-me understand the project. You know that client? Yeah, that's me.
About a month ago, I realized I was out of the cute, one-off, brown ink on waste paper business cards I'd printed for myself when I got my first printing press last year. So I needed new cards! But what would they look like? Well, they should be very well-designed, show how talented I am, but also give a potential client an idea of how quirky and fun I am. And I wanted them to be professionally printed, but I wanted them to be on super-thick stock and I wanted painted edges on the cards.
And I really liked all the weird cards on the google. But really they had to be "normal" enough to fit in a card carrier since I really like the carrier I already have. And money was no object, except that it kind of was. I wasn't going to pay $5 a card. Right? Yeah.
So I sat down to design. And I hammered away at it for a couple of hours and got nowhere. Because the design just wasn't coming together. So I decided maybe getting out of my pjs (working for yourself in a home studio is AWESOME but a topic for another post) might give me enough time away from my sketchbook to jump start my brain.
I'm in the shower less than 30 seconds when I remember: I already designed really nice business cards for myself as my final project at Parsons! That match my resume. That show I'm classy and capable and quirky and fun. Duh! After I got back down to the studio, I pulled them up, did a final tweak and taDA! Off to the printer. Where all of my ridiculous desires were met. They came in yesterday. What do you think?
Cat Castells is a graphic artist and designer living in Bucks County, PA. A Parsons graduate, she is a freelancer who works for others and develops her own products as well. This blog was started out of a desire to help out fellow graphic designers who might be looking to do some mockups.