Set the Table

Making art is a self-originating process that I also put out in the world through my website or on Instagram, with no definite guarantee that it will yield any purchases. In fact I like to tell myself that I make what I want to make because it keeps me consistent in my style. I end up sitting on a LOT of art, stored in often times disorganized boxes in my studio. I'd rather make more art than chronicle them, get them uploaded and sold online. Even updating my website and making this blog post- this took be about 3 months of calendar reminders that I dismissed to finally get it out.


When I look at how I transform a set of materials (paper, block, cutting tools, ink) into a collection of print art, I imagine- if I only liked hanging all of my own art in my own house. I felt that was too self-centered. I could make a quilt of my 'oops' prints, if only I had opened that sewing machine my husband gifted to me on my birthday 6 years ago and learned to use it. I think about how and what to do with what I've made while still taking my art and style to the next level and motivating me to make more, and I can't not think about how to be eco-conscious, being conservative about the production and editions of prints. In the end, I also think about executing on requests from others over requests from self. It's a balancing act.


I started block printing on fabric when I was asked to teach a workshop using fabric. I've since taught a few of those classes and I even started making them to sell my own block printed tote bags for pop-up art shows and fairs. They took a long time to make as they each were designed with purpose and planning. Even so, they were so fun to make so I experimented with different materials of fabric using my blocks and printmaking ink for fabric. Then that's when I started doing napkins.


The linen napkins I block printed gearing up for the Winter Artisan Fair in November 2019 were intended to be accessible items for gift-giving. They completely sold out and I even took orders to make more in the remaining weeks of 2019. In the start of this year I designed new blocks and made a bunch of new napkins. The designs are hand block printed along the bottom quarter of the napkin as they still do take a lot of time to make each one by hand. I am selling these at Sawyer Supply and am taking orders (just email me!). The price point is not that crazy expensive (overall I think all my art is pretty reasonable) so if you do own one of my napkin sets, please USE THEM! Set that table and wipe up all that food off your face!


©2020  by Joan P Bogart