Wednesday, July 01, 2015

Coast Guard Cutter Print

 "USCGC Blackfin"
16"x20" pen & ink

Years ago I made a pen & ink drawing of a Coast Guard cutter. The drawing is done using the stippling technique...a pen & ink technique where the drawing is composed of just dots of ink...there are no straight lines....just dots. I use Koh In Noor rapidographs to do this. Rapidographs are mechanical pens that have a steel wire in the barrel that allows only one drop of ink to come out each time you press down on the's prefect for stippling.

Anyway, I was just looking at the drawing again thinking about a woman who had asked me if I had prints available of that drawing and at the time I hadn't even scanned the drawing. I used to make my early prints here in the studio. Each drawing had to be scanned in sections then put back together in photoshop...lots of clean up to the scans and then I'd print a test scan. Printing was done on an Epson 1520 wide format printer I had bought with archival inks so the prints would last. I printed on good quality hot pressed watercolor paper. I'd print about 5-10 prints and then sold the prints as people ordered them. When I needed more I'd buy more WC paper and print up another batch. Making your own prints was a lot of work and "a lot of work" is a major understatement.

I did get around to scanning the drawing but that was on an older scanner that wasn't that good to begin with. Scanners, for those of you who have only bought one in the last 10 years, used to suck on ice! Software didn't work with operating systems, bad scanning quality, lots of  "noise" in the scan...ghost lines...ugh! I'd like to rescan the whole thing now with my newer killer scanner I have. It's a scanner/copier/printer combo but scans better than any scanner I ever had in the old days!  In the detail photo you can see the scan quality...not that good, ugh!

I was thinking about finally getting to making some prints but there might be a few, my old printer and printer drivers might not work with my newer computer. I also might have a major problem finding archival inks for it since I bought the printer way back around the late 90' know how fast the computer world is. It's a dinosaur at this point. Damn progress!  I'll have to check some things out before I even attempt this.


David King said...

Hey again Ron. I've created some pen and ink drawings myself and scan them using an Epson V500, it does a good job and isn't that expensive. I use software called Panavue Image Assembler to stitch multiple scans together, it's not very smart but it's a free download and using workarounds I can get it to do what I want. You might consider getting a Fine Art America (FAA) account, you can direct your customers to order their prints there, then they can get it in a variety of sizes and substrates and even framed direct from FAA, you don't have to do anything but upload your images and set your markups.

Ron Guthrie said...

Hi David,
Hey, thanks for the advice and info. I've got to admit my methods are about 15 years behind the times. Back then I'm sure that's how it was done by most. I haven't kept up with it since I've spent so much time working with original oil paintings. The Panavue program sounds cool, I'll look into that today. Maybe it's faster or easier than Photoshop. Funny, I thought Fine Art America was just an artist website place....maybe I'm confusing that with another site. Excellent info David.
Thanks much!!