Thursday, December 04, 2008

Fools in Space

The Emperor Keyline is near completion, the Empress, with all her garden detail requires frequent breaks and is taking me longer than anticipated.

This is the press setup for printing the woodcut plates. I went to Lowes and the older fella in the lumber department knew I needed rails "to lift the rollers on the press" before I'd even finished saying what I was looking for. He must be familiar with the printing process! These pieces were already cut and price and the perfect size to fit the press bed and the perfect thickness to accomodate the plates.

I really like the smoother dispersion of the inks in the damp paper printing, there is a lot less pebbling in the larger color fields. The image on the left I laid down the inks in one pass of the brayer. In the one on the right I laid down all the colors in one pass of the brayer but on the blue I did an additional curving pass on the top and bottom edges to create a deeper blend. I feel this gives the image more depth. I'm not happy with the registration on this one. The elements in the most of the prints are in registration, the biggest problem is in the text, especially the caption at the bottom. I will probably re-carve and re-print this one when I've completed all the cards for the masters. For future pressings I'm probably going to have to adhere L-shaped edges to the sides of all the cards to ensure cleaner registration while using paper that is deckled on all four edges. That is simply not going to help with these plates since the registration is clearly off in the bottom caption in every card this shows the text registration is off in the carving.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Fool and Magus Color Proofs

In a previous post regarding my master's project I mentioned I was proofing the new Graphic Chemical Water Soluble inks. I love the way they handle and the color transparencies are gorgeous! I will be muting the blue and the yellow in parts of the fool using rainbow rolls and I will be amping up the blue in the Magus' tablecloth and the red in the curtain. Other than that I'm pleased with the colors
Above and below are some notes I made for my project journal. These are changes I want to make to the actual blocks. The touches of beige, brown and silver in the blocks was brushed in using stencil brushes. I think I will cut some acetate stencils just so I have a little more control on where the ink goes when I ponce it.

Above and below you can compare how the pigment dispersions handled versus the Graphic Chemical Inks. Details and lines are crisper and the cut marks are finer with the Graphic Chem inks. The Graphic Chem colors are richer and the blacks are deeper then the garish pigments.

Here we have a picture of the Empress carving in progress. Her garden has been giving me a sore elbow and numb palms so I'm going to work on the Emperor for a while. In between I will test making relief marks in wood with a woodburning tool and test print. If I like the line quality of the woodburning tool I will use it to finish the Empress' garden.

Saturday, November 15, 2008


OK so I have this crazy new idea. I would like to do some study in Italy. I figured I could just afford to do so if I sold most of my current artworks at a 25% discount. So I'm making this offer...

If you want to help an itinerant American artist get some exposure to great European works and architecture you can do so by buying my art! You can see most of it within my website: If you send me an email message with the word ITALY in the subject line and the name of the work(s) you want in the message I will go into my porfolio ( or my Etsy Shop ( and reduce the price just for you. If want a work in the website that's not listed in my portfolio or my etsy shop I will create a listing in Etsy just for you...

May be, just may be this crazy idea will work and I will be able to go to Italy with my college study abroad group. If not I will at least be able to start an Italy savings account and go by myself at a later date...

Ciao, Patti P-C

Friday, November 14, 2008

The Chariot

I've reached a somewhat finished point with the chariot design. I'm still not quite pleased with it; I feel like I've left something out, can't quite put my finger on it...oh well, I'm sure if I leave it alone and work on printing and carving that when I come back to the chariot whats wrong will jump right out at me. I may or may not leave the gold square on his breast...

I do realize that I need some shadows to ground the bike and the doggies, that will be hand drawn on the block, as well as warming up the highlights. Since the light source is from behind the skeleton will be mostly blue violet with peachy warm highlights just on the edges of shoulders, elbows etc. It's in my head don't need to put it in my digital sketches. I suppose I could print it out and watercolor the details...

If any of you viewers are Tarot readers please comment on what it needs for improvement. I may or may not use your advice but I will definitely appreciate it; if anything I'll grow from it!

I'll also appreciate artistic comments on improving the aesthetics and technique.

I'm proofing the fool and the magus in color with the new Graphic Chemical Water Soluble Block Printing Inks. I love them! At first I was concerned as the Lemon Yellow was really loose. I added just a touch of extender to it as the extender is super stiff, well then I couldn't get the brayer charged! So I added a drop of vehicle and it was back to the loose stuff. "Oh well" I thought and just rolled it on the block and printed it. It printed great! The pigment laid down thinly, smoothly and coverage was even. I would have never used oil based so loose on the block but it works with GC's WS. I've got just the lemon and the peacock printed so far. I'll post pics later when I've finished.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Update on the Masters

It's been a while since I blogged on about my Master's Project so here always you can see an image full size by clicking on it; use your browser's back button to return to the blog.

Color proofs of the Fool and the Magus were done. After discussion with my adviser it was decided I should stick to western techniques, using water based relief inks.

My adviser suggested Graphic Chemicals inks and a few days later my friend Rachel asked me if I wanted some Graphic Chemical water based relief inks she didn't plan to use again...

I don't care for the garishness of the pure pigment dispersions in these two proofs and I plan on eliminating some of the cut marks. For instance most of the red marks in the sky behind the Magus' curtain.

I completed the Priestess Keyline block and proofed it.

I'm mostly pleased with this keyline and will work on the color plates after I've reached my semester goal for designs and keylines. I do want to clean up the gap between the numbers at the top and give just a little more definition to the letters at the bottom; though I do like the way it weaves into the image.

As usual, I was so gungho at the beginning of the semester to get started on this work again that I wasn't paying attention and carved nearly the entire Empress plate before I realized that she wasn't

I've re-carved the keyline and am about to the same place I was when I discovered my error. Eventually I will finish carving the 1st one and varnish it as a bas relief work, and a reminder to "pay attention stupid!"

I completed design of the Lovers card and have the basic composition for the Chariot. I still want to go into it and eliminate the cacti, replacing them with skyscrapers and I want to replace the rottweiler on the left with a great Pyrenees. I also want to include some symbolism on the gas tank and an amulet on the rider's chest. Oh and of course I need to put in a number VII and the name of the card.

I have my composition for Strength in mind and have begun the research on the Hermit. Someday soon I will start posting my research on the cards. I should have started out doing so...

Saturday, November 01, 2008

IF: "And I Can See Russia From My House!"

This is a recent aquatint etching I did. I thought it perfectly fit this week's Illustration Friday theme of "Vacant." As well at this week's Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) activities and next week's elections...

Some appropriate toonage:

"Sex Pistols - Pretty Vacant"

Friday, August 22, 2008

Calaca IV featured

My monoprint titled Calaca IV will be part of the Featured Artwork rotation on the homepages at World Wide Arts Resources and The feature will be on August 23, 2008. The duration of the feature is one day and the rotation changes every few minutes. Please stop by at and on the 23rd of August and take a look at my featured artwork, let me know what you think. You can see my Premier Portfolio in progress at:

You may also view more of my artworks at:

My website:
My Etsy Shop:
My flickr photostream:

IF: Detach

I had no ideas for this week's Illustration Friday theme Detach and had pretty much given up on coming up with something. Then Wednesday afternoon when I was feeding the critters that make my backyard their home I noticed the three pullets were not following their Mama around anymore. When chicks reach a certain point in adolescence the mother hen, with the help of the horny old rooster, chases them off. There is usually much drama and these chicks are no exception. Now on their own they are more timid than usual. All teenagers are hungry yet they are too frightened by the sudden change that they wont come near me. If a bird flies overhead they run for cover and hide. It came to me that these chicks are not too please with their sudden state of detachment...

Thursday, August 21, 2008

I may need to draw a new avatar...

Fuzzy Ponytail GONE!

Well I finally did it. I cut off the hair and sent it into
Pantene Beautiful Lengths so it can be used toward making a wig for an adult woman going through chemotherapy.

I had originally committed to cutting it on the 27th of July as a tribute to the memory of my mother. Lung cancer took Mom in 2006, July 27 was her birthday. Well I got around to it late. I was out of town on the 27th of July so I waited until I got home to get the hair cut.

I chose Pantene Beautiful Lengths because they only ask for 8 inches of hair as opposed to other charities that demand 12 inches. Also I like that they give the wigs to adult women. There are plenty of charities that give natural hair wigs to children but not so many that give natural hair wigs to adult women.

Well that extra few weeks wait to do the cut must have made a difference because the entire ponytail was pretty darned close if not 12 inches.

Both pink shirt photos on the right show my hair in 2006 shortly after Mom's passing. The red shirt photos on the left show the new do with the one on top showing the donated ponytail.

Eight months ago when I made the commitment to cut the hair it was several inches longer but still layered (see the 1/3/2008
posting: Pledge to Cut Hair on Mom's Birthday).

For more info on Pantene Beautiful Lengths go to:

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

NFAC: A Dog's Life - contest submission

NFAC: Gracie & Austin an Original Etching by Phare-Camp Opening Bid 99 cents

This print is my entry in the eBay Nibblefest Art Contest, a themed art contest beginning on the 20th of each month. The theme for the month of August is "A Dog's Life." The winner of each month's contest is the work that recieves the highest number of bids.

This image size of this etching is approximately 4x6" on fine art printing paper that is approximately 6.75 x 9.75"

The subject of this etching is from a photo of of my grandson Austin standing in a field of wildflowers hugging my sister's dog; a mini Aussie Gracie.

This signed print is also marked A/P which indicates it's an Artist's Proof. In this case since I hand pull my prints it's a working proof that has few if any variations from the numbered edition prints.

In addition to this print I submitted 4 more works that feature dogs. A color version of this one, another dog etching with a boy and a color version of it and one of my Year of the Dog cards for 2006

Gracie & Austin a Mixed Media Etching by Phare-Camp

opening bid $25.00

Four color mixed media print edition of 75: The black line work is intaglio (etching)and the color fields are block printed.

An original print of a boy and dog by Patricia B. Phare-Camp

This is a print of the artist's grandson Austin being kissed by Gracie, her sister's little miniature Australian Shepard, in a field of Texas wildflowers.

Honey I Think One of the Neighbors is Stealing My Tomatoes Opening bid 99 cents

Hand colored open-editioned block print of my golden retriever Keya. 4" x 6"

There was this one summer where each morning as I watered the veggies I'd note which tomatoes would be ready in time for dinner. I'd go to work & return to find all the ripe tomatoes gone. I told hubby I thought someone was stealing my tomatoes so he came home early from work to investigate. As he stepped on the deck he noticed Keya running away and shaking her head violently. Worried he ran over to discover she had a tale tell tomato hooked to her fang, She was trying to shake off the evidence before he discovered her thievery! I'd have never suspected as she was arthritic and I didn't think she could cross the two foot fence around the garden. Only goes to show that pain is no barrier to a juicy tomato at the perfect peak of ripeness! Keya left us later that year and I remembered our love for her in our hand printed holiday card.

Chris & Keya; Original Dog & Boy Etching by Phare-Camp

Opening bid 99 cents

Black and white etching. 4x6" on laid print making paper. edition of 100

This is a print of my son Chris when he was 12. He and his fuzzy friend Keya were cooling off in the shade of an old mulberry tree after a rousing game of soccer.

Years later Keya left the planet a week after her boy Chris left home for basic training in the Army.

Chris & Keya; Hand Colored Dog & Boy Etching by Phare-Camp Opening bid $25.00

Mixed media print:

intaglio/etching & monoprint

4x6 edition 25

In this edition I scrape the intaglio ink into etched lines of my printing plate. After wiping the plate clean of most of the ink I hand paint ink thinned with linseed oil onto the un-etched areas of the plate. I then print the hand colored plate through the press to transfer the whole onto a sheet of print making paper.

This is a great opportunity to collect some of my animal prints at a great price and help save the environment at the same time. All of these prints were created using non-toxic printmaking technology and 20% of the sales for these items will go directly to Ducks Unlimited a non-profit wetlands conservation organization.

Please be sure to search eBay for NFAC to see more great entries from many other artists, each starting at just $0.99."

Wednesday, August 13, 2008


This is my entry for Illustration Friday. The theme this week is Sail. I used various decorative and handmade papers to create this collage ACEO (2.5x3.5"). While sketching this image I remembered the poem by Edward Lear titled The Owl and The Pussycat. I vaguely visualized then sketched the following ACEO.
The Owl and The Pussycat
an unfinished posthumous poem by Edward Lear


The Owl and the Pussy-cat went to sea
In a beautiful pea green boat,
They took some honey, and plenty of money,
Wrapped up in a five pound note.
The Owl looked up to the stars above,
And sang to a small guitar,
'O lovely Pussy! O Pussy my love,
What a beautiful Pussy you are,
You are,
You are!
What a beautiful Pussy you are!'


Pussy said to the Owl, 'You elegant fowl!
How charmingly sweet you sing!
O let us be married! too long we have tarried:
But what shall we do for a ring?'
They sailed away, for a year and a day,
To the land where the Bong-tree grows
And there in a wood a Piggy-wig stood
With a ring at the end of his nose,
His nose,
His nose,
With a ring at the end of his nose.


'Dear pig, are you willing to sell for one shilling
Your ring?' Said the Piggy, 'I will.'
So they took it away, and were married next day
By the Turkey who lives on the hill.
They dined on mince, and slices of quince,
Which they ate with a runcible spoon;
And hand in hand, on the edge of the sand,
They danced by the light of the moon,
The moon,
The moon,
They danced by the light of the moon.

Monday, July 21, 2008

IF: Enough

This is my entry for Illustration Friday.
The theme this week is Enough. Enough said.

IF: Foggy - July Nights in Tennesse

I've been vacationing in Clarksville Tennessee; visiting my son Chris and his family. I had a vision for last week's Illustration Friday Theme but I lacked tools to execute it. Finally went to a store called Hobby Lobby in downtown Clarksville where I picked up a small box of some hard pastels. Anyway the image I had in my mind was what I was seeing each night last week from my Son's back porch. It was a treat to watch the moon fill out and light up the mist hanging above a distant meadow. It was a perfect Illustration Friday for the theme Foggy. My original idea was to make this as a collage in various papers but since my supplies were limited I decided to get my vision down on paper and perhaps when I'm back home in my studio with my multitude of paper scraps I'll make a collage of this vision in torn mulberry papers and tissue.

Saturday, July 05, 2008

IF: Make Lemonade

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This week's them for Illustration Friday is "Sour."

Original collage ACEO
2.5 x 3.5"

This tiny collage was created for Illustration Friday, a website where each week on Friday artists are given a theme to illustrate. It's a really fun website; I can waste hours just looking.

I used decorative papers to create this. The backing is a dark blue art paper. the lemon is make with a paper that has an embossed texture. The orange skin is a mulberry paper printed with gold leaves, the pulp is a peachy mulberry printed with yellow leaves. The lime skin is a marbled paper and the lime pulp is a paper printed with green chrysanthemums.

Once I pasted the papers down with pva glue I embellished with a little magic marker.

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Baren Print Exchange 37: Drop Some Breadcrumbs by Phare-Camp

Baren Print Exchange 37: Drop Some Breadcrumbs:
While you travel in your grand adventure please leave a trail of breadcrumbs so we may follow and catch up to you when it's our turn to travel...

click on any picture to see it larger, user your browser's back button to return to this blog.

I finished my print for a Baren Forum print exchange. I'm getting it done early as I'm going to Tennessee for a month to visit my son and his family.

The picture here is my printing set-up. I like to print at the kitchen counter as I'm right by the sink and also I prefer to work standing up and the kitchen counter is the perfect working height for me.

This image is of my test strip for the inks I'm using. I can't just do pretty lines all in a row---no I have to make it fun. Anyway I had to also test the transparencies of the inks as well since I planned on overprinting many of the colors. I'm using Speedball water based inks. I mixed up a dark brown with brown, violet and a touch of gold; a moss green with green, a little yellow and more gold; a misty blue with blue a lot of silver and the last color a tan with brown, yellow and gold.

this is the block. its a 9x12" rubber block that is very easy to carve and it holds details rather nicely as you can see by the 1st stage proof I pulled

this is the second color. Instead of carving a block I cut the not-green areas away from a 9x12" sheet of "Skratchfoam" a brand of print medium that is very thin sheets of Styrofoam.

Here you can see 2nd state proof.

and here the print in it's 2nd state.

This is the third color plate,

the third state proof

and the print in its third stage.

for this last little bit I used one of the Scratchfoam pieces that I'd cut away from the green plate and used it like a stamp, taking care to position it just right around the little wren.

And here is the completed print.....