People ask, “Why a print, why not a painting?” On one hand, I enjoy the act of using tools to shape something, but much of the joy rests within the surprise factor—the mystery that unfolds while printing each piece. The many unpredictable factors involved with this art, and its spontaneous process that demands energy, improvisation, gesture, expressiveness, and directness, all contribute to my enduring love for this medium.
My current body of work focuses on the expansive, diverse environment of the Pacific Northwest Landscape. With the simple use of contrast and minimal color, as well as line manipulation, I strive to create exhilarating compositions inspired by the natural world.
– Kelli MacConnell
Captivated by the wilderness since early childhood, artist Kelli MacConnell embraces a unique relationship with nature that continuously sparks her imaginative work. Exploring landscapes with careful observation, she translates her natural surroundings into richly detailed prints. For MacConnell, printmaking serves as a key vehicle in fostering a relationship between humans and the natural world. Through her creations, she strives to show how one person can both exist in civilization and remain connected to that which is inherently wild.
Exploring the outdoors is in MacConnell’s blood. Her childhood road trips to the Smoky Mountains and Lake Michigan beaches were the inspiration for her extensive backpacking excursions as a young adult. While hiking the Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine, she tuned into wilderness exploration as both an integral part in understanding the world and an endless fuel source for creativity.
In 2006, after hiking the AT, sections of the Pacific Crest Trail, and traveling the country, she left her hometown of Cincinnati, Ohio. Once in Portland, she immersed herself in the vibrant Northwest artist community and Oregon wilderness. Soon after, at Portland State University, she found a love for printmaking, discovering the passion to share nature-driven experiences through artistic pieces. Currently, MacConnell is dedicated to exploring the endless possibilities of printmaking and creating original, introspective art in the hopes that it will speak beyond the frame, fostering a healthier relationship between humans and nature.
BFA in PrintmakingPortland State University / 2012
Linocut is a variation of woodcut printmaking. A sheet of linoleum, often mounted on a wooden block, is used for the relief surface. A design is carved into the linoleum surface with a sharp knife, V-shaped chisel, or gouge. This leaves the raised, un-carved areas to represent a mirror image of the final composition. The linoleum sheet is inked with a roller called a brayer, and then carefully impressed onto paper. The actual printing can be done by hand or with a press.
My prints are of or influenced by places that I have visited. The story of my experience with these sites unfolds as I carve. I use printmaking to develop a new and more conscious understanding of the subtleties found in these natural spaces.
My process of transforming my experience into a print involves reversing the image from my sketches onto the relief surface, then carving away the negative space. My work is printed primarily in black oil-based ink. Occasionally I will make use of simple color gradients to gently alter the mood. After the block is complete, I usually pull a few “proof prints” before proceeding with the series. These proofs are unique in that they are the very first prints pulled from a new carving. As such, they often contain experimentation with image and color that is not replicated in subsequent editions. I typically utilize a printing press in order to take advantage of the resultant embossing effect, a product of the machine’s enormous pressure. The final prints that make up the edition are printed using either Arches Cover white or BFK Rives paper.
So much more than merely a means of preserving your art, these professionally crafted, custom-made frames embody the ethos of the work they contain, thereby becoming a piece of art in their own right.
Every frame is fabricated from nearly 100% reclaimed materials. The only new products used are the screws and glue (to ensure durability). The lumber for these frames is all locally sourced salvaged material. A bulk of the material used is old growth CVG fir and western red cedar, common building materials in the early 1900’s. Most of this wood has been removed from turn of the century homes and barns slated to meet the wrecking ball. Years of service and interaction with man have contributed to the impressive patina that only time can apply.
A “floating” framing style is employed to highlight the torn “deckled” edge of the print. This allows the wall color to peek through, providing harmony with any color scheme. 99% UV blocking “conservation clear” glass is used to provide vibrant color for the next generations to enjoy. Finished with hand rubbed tung oil, my commitment to sustainability shines through.
– Jason Michaelson
Your transaction is complete, and your receipt will be emailed to you shortly! I'll be in touch with you soon about when your order will ship. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact me.