Hi-Bred Answers...
What's your favorite riso color or color combo?
yellow, flo pink, blue
Share 1-3 things about your technical process. (ie. how do you color separate?, how do you decide which colors, binding method, or paper to use?, is your process traditional, digital, or both?, if it's collaborative what does the back and forth look like?)
I try to let my concept drive my technical processes as much as possible. Aesthetics factor into every choice, but functionality is important to a quality piece. My paper choice depends not only on the finished look, but how it will receive the colors I want to use, and what type of binding I want to use if I’m making a book. The binding depends on the number of pages in the book, weight of the paper, cost, and functionality. When I collaborated with Floss Editions on an animated flipbook, we had to find a paper that was springy enough to flip well, but was also thin enough so the book didn’t get too thick. We also had to order a special stapler that could punch through 70 pages of heavier weight paper (over 0.75” thick) because the first one we tried didn’t work.
Share 1-3 things about your creative/conceptualizing process.
I am often asked how I come up with ideas but I don’t know if there is a coherent answer. I can say that many of my prints and books have started as a pencil sketch in a notebook. Even though most of my work ends up in the computer eventually, it is very important to sketch with a pencil. For some reason, my hand and mind are much freer and I am able to be more dynamic than I am with a digital tablet.
What did you have on your mind when you were working on this project/piece (or in general)? (ie. Does your work (this or other) relate to a particular current movement or concept?)
This piece was inspired by a painting I saw at an exhibition at the Cleveland Museum of Art. It’s called Gabrielle d’Estrees and One of Her Sisters in the Bath. There is a more famous painting with the same title and a very similar scene, but I like this one a lot more. The gesture of the two women depicted is very strange and it appealed to me, so I took a photo to record it. I don't remember if it was immediately or later that I got the idea to produce a new image where I borrow the gesture and invent everything else. I love looking at Renaissance paintings, I love the clothing and textures depicted in them, and the colors I see in them remind me of some of the colors I can get with riso inks. Copying masterworks is a very well-established method of improving your technique, and I believe that working in this tradition pushes my work in new directions.
Do you have any risograph-related tips and tricks you'd like to share?
Overlaying different color inks at different values is a great way to get more out of the riso.