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Prints of the flora/fauna of Thailand + Burma, designed as part of a workshop with an arts and crafts studio on the Thai-Burma border.
169 backers pledged $8,410 to help bring this project to life.

Production Timeline Update + Printing Press!

Posted by Mike Schultz (Creator)
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Today I have a lot of good news to share about the Thailand Burma Flora Fauna printmaking project. I’ll be discussing the updated production timeline, new equipment and supplies, and where we are at in the process.

Detail of the Golden Cat design – sneak peek!
Detail of the Golden Cat design – sneak peek!

1. Updated Production Timeline - The original delivery estimate that I gave was August of 2014. Due to a myriad of typical production snags (followed by necessary problem solving), the delivery date for your prints has been pushed back a few weeks.

However, I am happy to say that the end is in sight! We are working around the clock to bring you the best work possible, and this huge project is finally taking shape. THANK YOU for your patience and continued support! 

I’ve been looking to my Burma travel sketchbooks a lot while drawing the final designs. What a potent experience it was traveling through Upper Burma.
I’ve been looking to my Burma travel sketchbooks a lot while drawing the final designs. What a potent experience it was traveling through Upper Burma.

Pictured above, top left to right– Mt Popa and its mountaintop monastery, gardens and boats along the mighty Mekong River in Luang Prabang, Laos.

Pictured above, bottom left to right– a welder at a brass foundry welding together a large Buddha, a tall thin smokestack pouring a black cloud of soot over a shanty town outside of Mandalay, and a mysterious all-young-female road crew building a road by hand with woven baskets of hand broken gravel.

New treehouse printmaking studio? Check!
New treehouse printmaking studio? Check!

2. Printing Press + New Printmaking Studio – This month I purchased a beautiful little table top printing press (a little workhorse!) and built a printmaking studio in a well-lit space to make your artwork. So far, the press is fantastic, and it has been a joy getting it dialed in.

This direct drive workhorse is a little behemoth weighing in at 70 pounds. It’s got two solid steel rollers and a steel bed. So far, I love it!
This direct drive workhorse is a little behemoth weighing in at 70 pounds. It’s got two solid steel rollers and a steel bed. So far, I love it!
Studio mission control - with this project's immense and ever shifting to-do list (with a funny silhouetted self portrait tucked in there).
Studio mission control - with this project's immense and ever shifting to-do list (with a funny silhouetted self portrait tucked in there).

It’s a good thing I learned about lean manufacturing and organization from working with my friends at Grovemade here in Portland, OR! Using lean production techniques has helped to keep this to-do list wrangled.

3. Professional Training - I am being trained by a skilled local printmaker for whom I have immense respect. He is helping me to dial in my process to make the best pieces possible with my tools. (I’ll share more about this artist and his work in an upcoming post.)

Experimenting with monotype, a process of making a one-of-a-kind print. Shown here I am drawing with loose blue printmaking ink directly onto a copper plate.
Experimenting with monotype, a process of making a one-of-a-kind print. Shown here I am drawing with loose blue printmaking ink directly onto a copper plate.

4. Council From Other Artists - The past few weeks I have received a lot of help from some incredible artists and friends. They’ve patiently considered my questions and have been dishing out valuable advice on printing processes and tools. Endless gratitude to artists Jack Baumgartner, Keegan Wenkman, Vladimir Zimakov, and Andrea Lauren for some foundational printmaking advice! (Their names link to their awesome artwork– have a look!)

Hand drawing a variation of my hare chop on a 2009 linocut.
Hand drawing a variation of my hare chop on a 2009 linocut.

5. Supplies – Heeding the advice of my peers, I have been stocking up on and experimenting with a number of high quality supplies and tools. The printing studio set up and equipment include items like the press and its required felt pads, brayers for rolling out ink, a glass palette and palette knives, wooden tables and rolling carts, shelving for supplies, and more.

Shipments arrived! A bulk order from the French Paper Company and a variety of printing inks from great companies like Portland’s own Gamblin.
Shipments arrived! A bulk order from the French Paper Company and a variety of printing inks from great companies like Portland’s own Gamblin.

The supplies also include a variety of special inks and solvents for printmaking– and just yesterday I received a box of large sheets of fancy cream colored paper from the French Paper Company. It’s a high quality, smooth textured paper with a beautiful color that will lend itself well to this project.

I have also been experimenting with professionally made stamps that will act as the signature seal, or “chop”, as it is called in printmaking (more on those in a future post).

6. Prototypes and Practice – This past week I’ve been working out the details for the two 4 x 6″ postcard-sized prints that some of you will receive as your rewards for backing this project.

Pictured center: A life sized (Japanese sumi ink and gouache) hand drawn prototype of one of the 4 x 6″ prints.
Pictured center: A life sized (Japanese sumi ink and gouache) hand drawn prototype of one of the 4 x 6″ prints.

This small piece will feature a beautiful flower called the Camellia Kissii, found in Burma, and will be made as a linocut relief print on French paper. Also– if you look closely you can see practice stamps with one of the new hare chop stamp prototypes.

Making concept drawings for the additional print in the series. This piece will act as a “title page” for the series and will feature a landscape of Bagan, Burma in the center of the print.
Making concept drawings for the additional print in the series. This piece will act as a “title page” for the series and will feature a landscape of Bagan, Burma in the center of the print.

 Thank you all so much for your patience and your continued support with this project!

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