Sunday, March 25, 2012

Interview with JJ Eisfelder of Prairie Rose Press

I grew up in Kansas City where I was able to start exploring many different art forms at a young age. I went to college in Missoula, Montana, where I earned a B.F.A. in Printmaking and also studied Ceramics. A few years after college, I moved to rural Virginia to set up a studio where I have spent the past twelve years making nature-inspired prints and functional pottery.

Why do you like to print?
I find printmaking to be a challenging and surprising medium. It is challenging because I really have to think about how to break apart a particular scene into different layers and also to anticipate how a certain texture will print. It is surprising because my favorite prints have been the ones that are not planned, but are the results of trying a different color scheme or of experimenting with a new way of layering my plates. I also like the freedom to change the colors of an image and to explore how that changes the mood of the print.

What is your favorite print medium and why?
I enjoy relief printing, specifically woodcut, linocut and collagraph. I love the stark lines of the wood and linocuts and also the looseness and the freedom to experiment of the collagraph. 

How long have you been printing and how has your work evolved?
I have been a printmaker for more than 15 years but really dedicated myself to it about 5 years ago. I started out making limited edition representational prints of trees, veggies and flowers. I still use some of these images, but my work has become much more experimental. I like to experiment with layering these landscape images with crazy colorful patterns as the background, exploring how color changes the feel of the print. Most recently I have been tearing and reassembling my prints into what I call “collagraph collages.”

What inspires you?
I am inspired by all things natural, by trees, flowers and leaves, but also by the patterns created by blades of grass or the ripple of water. 

How do your promote your work?
Besides my Etsy site, I sell at a few craft shows in Virginia every year and do a home sale in Kansas City (where I am from). I sell my work at a few galleries, including j fergeson gallery, where I currently have a solo show of my most recent work. I am also working on developing a personal website through that will highlight my larger and more involved prints and collages.

 Are you working on any particular projects now?
I just finished a solo show of my most recent work at j fergeson gallery in Farmville, VA, and am continuing to experiment with this body of work. The two newest prints in this show were inspired by patchwork quilts, where the printed squares were actually sewn together to form a quilt-like piece. I am continuing to work with this idea and am hoping to find some other galleries to show this new work.

Tell us one random fact about yourself.
Besides being an artist, I also grow and sell a unique heirloom onion called Egyptian Walking Onions through Local Harvest, which I like to describe as “Etsy for farmers”!

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1 comment:

Joanna said...

Thanks for posting, Kate, this is awesome. As a new member of Printsy, I'm super psyched that there's this amazing blogspot, too! YAY!
have a great March!