During my 24-hours in Pittsburgh I also got a chance to visit one of my favourite woodcut printmaking studios; Paul Roden and Valerie Lueth of Tugboat Printshop, where we chatted about woodcuts and all things print.
If you’re not familiar with their work, take a look at their site - they are an amazing duo, consistently producing amazingly detailed and vibrant prints, every one of which I’m itching to buy. Paul and Valerie live and work at their home studio, and have been making and selling prints since graduating from college. They have also produced commissions for various clients, including The Decemberists.
The pair posses a wonderful illustration style, perfectly suited to the medium they work in. Paul usually cuts the blocks from plywood sheet, after the illustration has been sketched onto the surface and marked-up.
Above: Plywood block, sketched and inked-up, ready for engraving, then proofing.
All of the work is printed using a beautiful Conrad Machine Co. press, and registration is done using a wooden jig, ensuring that each colour layer prints in exactly the right position.
Above: Tugboat Printshop’s press and front room of their home studio.
Below: Registering a print using a wooden jig (block shown is RV from the Life of Leisure series.)