May 13, 2016

AEGN

        Although I pointed out in the previous post that most relief print artists don’t seem to bother to include their name or initials carved into their blocks, I enjoy figuring out ways to get my initials in there.  The linked initial design I use has been my symbol since I was about ten, with the addition of the N upon marriage.  Like so many things from my childhood, I came up with it when my older brothers had the idea first.  (Their initials worked better than mine, I thought, but I did the best I could.)  Certainly I sometimes just stick my initials plainly in a corner of a piece, and on smaller pieces especially I do leave it off altogether if there doesn’t seem to be a good place for it.  But whenever possible it pleases me not only to include my initials, but to include them in an interesting way.


        (By the way, I've illustrated this post with details to focus on the initials, but if you're curious to see how any of the details fit into the whole piece, you can always click the links at the bottom to see the complete images.)
        One possibility to make initials more interesting is to modify or decorate them in accordance with the style or theme of the piece, such as making leafy letters in a leafy scene, foamy letters in a foamy scene, or medieval style letters in a medieval style scene.
        Another option I enjoy is the Dürer method: putting the initials on an object that’s sitting in the scene, such as a book.  I use a variant of that when I’m making an image of something that would have writing on it anyway.  Then I can substitute my initials for some other name or word that might logically have been there, such as the name on a train or the registration on an airplane.
        Sometimes instead of making the initials conspicuous by making them an integral part of the picture, I have fun
camouflaging them instead.  Twigs, watery ripples, spider webs, struts and wires, and all sorts of busy patterns make possible places to disguise my initials.
        As you look at my art, or of course any other art you encounter, keep an eye out for whether the artist has included a name or initials, and if so, how.  You may find some pleasing details, some hints of humor, or some clever design that you hadn't noticed at first glance.  Although signing a work of art is usually something of an afterthought, still a name is an especially personal thing, and I find it interesting to see how other artists treat their names, and interesting to find fun things to do with my own.




[Pictures: detail of Autumn Clematis Door, rubber block print by AEGN, 2013;
detail of August 25, 2007 - Aggregate Industries, rubber block print by AEGN, 2007;
detail of Young Unicorn, linoleum block print by AEGN, 2015;
detail of Holy Mountain, rubber block print by AEGN, 2007;
detail of Piping Plover, rubber block print by AEGN, 2008;
detail of Tom’s Orangutan - Bukit Lawang, rubber block print by AEGN, 2004;
detail of Three at the Water Hole, rubber block print by AEGN, 1998;
detail of Nightshade in the Sunlight, rubber block print by AEGN, 2007;
detail of A Glimpse of Paradise, rubber block print by AEGN, 2011;
detail of The Family Who Lived in a Shoe, rubber block print by AEGN, 2003;
detail of Bookby-upon-Shelf, rubber block print by AEGN, 2016;
Cement Mixer, rubber block print by AEGN, 2006;
Lockheed Vega, rubber block print by AEGN, 2015;
detail of Steam Locomotive, rubber block print by AEGN, 2010;
detail of Nycteris & Flederer’s Patent Mechanical Chiropterid (Model 3), rubber block print by AEGN, 2015;
detail of Blackbird and Hawthorn, rubber block print by AEGN, 2014;
detail of Diatomaceous Art, rubber block print by AEGN, 2012;
detail of New-fallen Snow, rubber block print by AEGN, 2010;
detail of Newport Dormer, rubber block print by AEGN, 2016;
detail of Magnolia Warbler, rubber block reduction print by AEGN, 2014;
detail of Eiffel Tower, rubber block print by AEGN, 2015.]

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