We just wrapped up a two-color, two-block linocut project in Beginning Printmaking. I made the skull/VOTE print above. It was profoundly satisfying to return to carving and printing after a couple weeks off at the beginning of the semester! Also satisfying is having an abundance of small prints to distribute. It feels generous and restorative.
As part of our assignment, working from an exercise from Carolyn Wooldard and Susan Jahoda’s excellent book Making and Being, we first meditated and wrote about the people who helped us arrive at this point in time. Later, we designed prints with the intention of distributing them to specific communities. It was moving and inspiring to hear students discuss the people who’ve supported them in their journey as artists. Similarly, the choices students made about who would receive their prints gave us insight into each others’ lives and values.
I hope to give some of these skull prints to the organizers and volunteers I’ve gotten to work with in the lead up to the election next month. Their work and ongoing enthusiasm has been a good balance to the anxiety and fear that I feel when I watch the news these days. It’s tempting to want to see the election as an end, but we will have much work to do no matter the outcome in November. Voting is a start.