Paul Roden and Valerie Lueth of Tugboat Printshop have been making woodcut prints since 2006. Their process is entirely handmade, beginning with the low relief carving of ¾” birch plywood, followed by hand-rolling the blocks with ink, and finally pressing the images onto archival paper.
The Pittsburgh-based studio chooses to make woodcut prints over other types of printmaking, such as screen prints or digital prints, because of the integration of the wood grain into the final piece. And although one might think that carving the block of wood would be the most time-consuming part of the process, the duo says, “the time spent drawing and planning out our images is by far the longest task.”
The piece below is titled ‘Overlook.’ The in-progress 28″ x 46″ woodcut print will have 3 to 4 color blocks added to the key which is pictured below. For a behind-the-scenes look at this piece, visit the duo’s flickr album documenting the two-year long process!