Sunflower Seed head Woodcut Print

Sunflower seed head Moku Hanga print

Sunflowers are one of my passions. Someone once told me never to grow sunflowers because “you will move”. I didn’t sow any seeds but I moved about 19 times after that. To put that myth to rest I finally sowed sunflower seeds and I enjoyed them every day right through their cycle. In fact, where I’m living now, there are thousands of acres of sunflowers every year. More woodcuts about sunflowers will follow in time. In fact I did a copper etch of a sunflower recently. Check out “the Golden Mean”, phi 1.6180339887499…..and Leonardo Pisano Fibonacci from Pisa AD 1170 – 1250.

You can imagine how many seeds I had to carve, twice, as every seed had a light and a dark side to it and some veining. The key block is solid cherry and the two colour blocks are made of Fijian kauri ply. I used pigments in water with a bit of rice paste and applied them with a brush. The printing was done with a baren. Some prints are on Japanese paper, a heavy, natural buff-coloured and textured paper called Kochishi. So all done in the traditional Japanese style of Moku Hanga printing. The rest are printed on Arches 185 grams smooth using an acetate sheet to protect the soft paper from the action of the baren.

Photos copyright © to ACW ten Broek