Art Major Life: Linocut

Just before fall break, I finished my second printmaking project of the year. I’ve done some work with relief printmaking before and wanted to experiment a little bit more, so for this project I worked with speedy-cut (a rubber-like substance perfect for carving) on a medium scale. I chose to do a monoprint series that addressed the theme of femininity. I’m very interested in the classics (I would be a double major if I had time for the language requirement!), so I worked with figures from Greek mythology. In particular, I chose to represent two women of Ancient Greek mythology that represent different sides of femininity for me: Persephone and Artemis.

My carved and inked plate of Artemis with my first test print

My carved and inked plate of Artemis with my first test print

And Persephone

And Persephone

In the various translations and versions of the myths concerning these goddesses, Artemis is the “pure maiden,” whose strength comes from her prowess in the hunt, while Persephone is often cast as the victim stolen from her beautiful world by Hades of the underworld. It is my belief that these two women are both strong, Artemis in her steadfast belief in her own strength and Persephone in her ability to adapt in an adverse situation she is forced into. I chose to depict these women as faceless and in traditionally feminine positions in order to depict the inherent strength in femininity. The facelessness comes from my belief that it shouldn’t and does not matter what they look like. I used the images of these women and what they represent to convey this feminine strength.

Additionally, I did two linocuts of the images or symbols associated with each goddess: Persephone’s pomegranate, and Artemis’ bow and arrow. These prints also had a few quotes from the Homeric hymns to Demeter and Artemis.

Inking the linocut plate...

Inking the linocut plate…

And the first print!

And the first print!

image6 image5And here’s the finished products all together:Processed with VSCOcam with c1 presetIt was quite a process carving all these pieces (and especially hard on my hand!), but overall I’m pretty happy with how they turned out!