Diane Fine - Printmaker and Book Artist
O'Connell
2008
intaglio
11 x 14 inches
Kathleen O'Connell's "traditional" contribution to the porfolio is entitled
" Te Quiero Decir (Siempre Eres Bienvenido Aqui)."

O'Connell Statement:

At the onset of this project, digital output was rarely incorporated in my work because everything must be planned from the beginning, there is no allowance for chance and reaction, the output cannot duplicate actual texture or the layers or richness of color created by hand. While I often used the computer as a tool, as I would also use pencil and paper, it generally served out of convenience. It is quicker to alter color and explore general color pairings using a computer than to mix and match ink swatches and imagine multiple objects or plates in those colors.

For me, creating art relies heavily on process. Pleasure comes from preparing the matrix, making the image, proofing and printing the print. I sweat, I get dirty, my feet are sore at the end of a good session. The process also creates the possibility to alter the original plan and react to what has been pulled. Surely, digital media does not give this sort of pleasure!

The goal was to explore digital printing, making it yield to my needs and desires. I discovered that I could be sweaty, dirty or sore-footed, as well as eye-strained, and chair-slouched after a digital output session. The entire process was labor intensive in a very different way; things go wrong here too! I found that much more manipulation is done within the computer matrix, before printing, than with the prints. The computer spit out an edition of almost-too-perfect prints. Instead of reveling in their reversal, I found delight in watching them appear from below the print-head. They were smooth and flat, but colorful. While I was visually satisfied, the olfactory pungency of digital ink vastly differed from the nostalgic-zest of an etching ink.

In general, I think that the media is new enough that we find ourselves easily impressed by its most simplistic possibilities. Often, unfortunately, we see digital printing as Photoshop output: use the twirl feature, then print. What a drag! I was surprised to be content with my digital image, and surprised again to have the desire to make more digital prints, to explore this media. Ahead of us is a realm of possibilities using digital medias that we have only begun, or have yet to imagine.


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