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A little ABOUT me...


For around 38 years, I taught Art in Secondary Colleges in Australia. My wife and I retired to Israel where I am now developing my own art work in my small Jerusalem studio for my online Gallery.

My main areas of activity are in oil painting and relief printmaking - linocuts in particular. I also have interests in drawing and photography.

...and something about my TECHNIQUES.

There is a variety of styles - brought about through the interaction of subject matter with technique together with the idea of the work. Each subject begged to be presented in its own particular way. As the artist, I facilitated their creation.


Aside from the variety of styles and formats (e.g. "Modeh Ani" - "The Waterfall" - "Carousel Horse" - "The Watcher"), I use different techniques. "Three Red Apples" involves several layers of glazing; "Studio Window Backyard" is  'alla prima'; "Shell" is a linocut printed in the multi-block technique; "Butterflies" is a linocut combining the 'jigsaw' technique with the 'waste block' technique.











                "Three Red Apples" (Detail)                  "Studio Window Backyard" (Detail)                  "Shell" (Detail)                                 "Butterflies" (Detail)

                             GLAZING                                              ALLA PRIMA                                    MULTI- BLOCK                           JIGSAW and WASTE  BLOCK                                                                                                                                                                                                                          


Styles of painting refers to the look of the work. Broadly, the look can be traditional or modern. Traditional can be subdivided, for example, into Renaisance, Baroque, Pre-Raphelite, Impressionist and so on. Modern art can be subdivided, for example, into Cubist, Futurist, Expressionist, Non-Objective, Surrealist, PopArt and many, many more. These can be further sub-divided.


Format means the proportions of the painting - square, rectanglular or other shape.


Technique is the method of using, or applying, the media (the materials), that let you see the work. For example,  media includes oil, tempera or watercolour paint, pencil, charcoal, pastel and so on. How these are applied (used by the artist), to the ground (ie. canvas or paper or wood panels etc.) , is the technique.


Alla prima means to apply the paint directly to the canvas to directly produce a finished painting. The result can be a fresh looking work.The brushstrokes and texture of the paint become a part of the painting.  Glazing is an indirerct technique. The finished work is built up very gradually via layers of transparent paint. Each layer is affected by previous layers. This can result in a glossy paint surface of deep, rich and also subtle colours, usually free of brushstrokes.


Many people are unfamiliar with LINOCUT PRINTMAKING. Very simply put, it is a method of cutting a 'stamp' and printing it. The background is cut away and the remaining raised part is inked. Paper is pressed onto the inked block to get the image. The material used for the block is linoleum, originally a floorcovering material. Printing from a raised surface is called relief printing. Wood cuts and wood engraving are other methods of relief printing. Linocuts have their own 'look' and have been made by many famous artists such as Matisse, Picasso, Baselitz, Escher, Shmitt-Rottluff.


Regardless of technique used to produce the linocut print, it is important to understand that  while a photocopy will produce a copy of an image - usually itself a copy! -  each linocut is an original  despite being a printed many times. There is often a slight difference between prints due to the printing process and the ink can be felt - like paint. See the 'jig-saw' technique further below.


Once an edition (a designated number of prints), has been printed, the linoblock is usually destroyed or defaced by the artist. If the block is kept whole, it can be used to produce more prints - a second edition - but it is so identified when signed by the artist. Further, while linoblocks can be printed a few thousand times before wearing out, some degradation can be evident in later printings before this happens. With the waste-block technique, there can be no further prints as the lino block is progressively cut away with each colour printed.







                                          Cutting a lino block for another colour for                                                                                         "Carousel Horse" (Detail)

                                                                      the border design for "Carousel Horse", a                                                                                           Linocut   

                                                                     combined technique of multi-block and 

                                                                     waste-block printing.                                                                                                     




With waste-block printing, areas of a particular colour are cut away on the block as that colour is no longer needed. Once cut away, that area cannot be used to print. Gradually, the block is wasted away - reduced - to nothing. This is also termed reduction printing


Multi-block printing uses a separate block for each colour. Before being printed, each block is registered - that is, matched-up - so the different areas on the different blocks will print correctly in place to complete the design.

The 'jig-saw' technique involves, as the name indicates, placing the various separate parts of the block on a base. Each part is like a small block - but they fit together to make up the full sized print. In the print, "Butterflies", each butterfly was a separate block. After individual inking each was set in its marked place on a board. Paper was laid over the inked blocks. Pressure was applied to the paper. When the paper was gently removed, it bore the printed image of the butterflies. The process is repeated for each print - thus each print IS an original.


                                                     While it may not be that vital to know how, or even why, a work of art was made, it                                                                           certainly adds to the appreciation of that work. Perhaps the most important kind of                                                                           appreciation is the ongoing affinity and joy had in just looking at the work.

                                                     Therefore, I hope you find satisfaction in viewing the art work in my online gallery,


                                                      Roy Karp 











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