Saturday, February 20, 2010

Psalm 16

The journey continues......

I am still designing, carving, printing and illuminating the series, just slow in updating! I have carved up to Psalm 20, printed and illuminated up to Psalm 18 and Psalm 21 is all designed and ready for the block.

"Keep me safe, O God, for in you I take refuge". Psalm 16:1

Well, here is the printed image for Psalm 16.

The model is my lovely daughter Meagan.

I was trying to capture an image of fear, loneliness, confusion and overall angst. David supposedly wrote this Psalm while hiding in a cave from Saul. A modern interpretation would have someone hiding in a room. In the corner. In the darkness.

Image was carved on a wood block (maple). Had fun with the background, which was created with different grits of sandpaper, a roller, a hammer and a pig sticker.

I didn't want to shade or shadow Meagan, I liked the look that just over-exposing the image created, it added to the "feeling" I was shooting for.

Used Graphic Chemical water based black ink, printed on the Zerkal I have been using for all the images. I keep telling myself to stop designing with soooo much black space areas (they are very hard to print correctly and very tiring). But I digress.

Now for some new fun! I decided to change from markers for the calligraphy and illumination and go a little more analog. Here is the decorative initial:

By the way, big props for my local Kinko's, who helped me with the scanning. They are so good and very nice.

I designed the decorative letter myself, as I have done for almost all of these Psalms. Don't tell my pastor, but I designed this one Sunday morning during church. I get some of my best ideas in church.

I used tempra paint and watercolors for the initial, and a very, very small brush, as well as black ink from the bottle for the outlines. I also switched from a marker for the calligraphy to a metal tipped calligraphy pen, which I really like. You can see below how much more crisp and precise the lettering looks and it also allows me to be a bit more flourishing.

Here is the illumination:

It stretches across the whole page, encompassing both the print and the text. Hand painted as well.

And here is the final image:

Comments are always welcome and appreciated. Sales too.


  1. Clever technique for the background. I love this series.

  2. Really beautiful work. You captured a mood.

  3. The simplicity of the image is wonderful. I get a lot of ideas and images at church, too. Maybe God likes artists, or at least knows that we artists are a little slow and need visuals to understand things :)

  4. Absolutely fantastic! Gorgeous print and a very wonderful project.

  5. Great Work Dan, That creativity is flowing! You just get better and better.


  6. Unbelievably unique. The character of your work is amazing!

  7. This one is really good. You got not only talent, but the real meaning of getting your messege to who needs to hear it.