Wood engraving is a technique that has been used for well over 200 years to create intricate images, mostly black and white, that can be used in letterpress printing.
The blocks are usually made from boxwood, engraved on the end grain, using specialist steel engraving tools, and made ‘type-high - that is the same height as cold metal type. This allows them to print at the same time as the type, and since the boxwood blocks are extremely strong, they can print many thousands of impressions before showing any wear and tear.
Thomas Bewick and his studio over 200 years ago perfected the technique, creating jewel-like images for use in numerous high quality publications.
Many graphic artists since then have sought to master the technique, perhaps the most famous in the 20th century was Eric Ravillious.
Jonathan aims to follow in this tradition, exploring the marks and textures possible, and investigating the boundaries of illustrative possibilities.
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