In the new year, I’ve come to think a lot about mark-making. I define that as the kind of gesture left behind after a stroke of painting or drawing. Marvin Lowe, my printmaking professor at Indiana University, drilled it into me. No, you are not allowed to make “chicken scratches” on your metal etching plate. Mine etching plates were zinc or copper. Every mark must be considered, should have presence, weight, character.
We’ve now had over 60 days of consecutive snow on the ground here in Iowa. Winter in general, and snow in particular, tends to isolate the visual effect of a tree’s bare branch, or whithered vegetation against the snow. I’m seeing “marks” all over the place, and were it not for the sometimes dangerous cold, I’d show many more images. Here are a few.