Originally designed this Canada Geese tessellation in the 90s. No giclée prints back then, it was complex screen printing. Multiple layers of ink over many days allowing drying time in between. The original print was huge, my biggest sheet of archival paper ever. The frames that stretched the fine mesh and stencils were big and cumbersome. But that was not my biggest problem.
As I was to learn from my teachers Benoit and Robert, my enemy was humidity. What? He revealed to me that a large sheet of paper will actually change in size considerably with just a few percentage points of change in humidity. All that work I had done in aligning the different colours to perfection, was lost because the paper had changed size. And all that time, as I was strenuously spreading ink with my custom squeegees, I was actually destroying my prints. I only had a dozen or so, at the end of a long print run, that made the cut. I tossed all the other ones. You can imagine my disappointment, after all that work. There was no way I could afford a sealed studio with humidity controls. I stopped trying, till now. Hurray for giclée prints!
Below, is the original print from a few decades back. These guys had running shoes back then. We were living in the spring migration route of a huge six week fly over. The Geese invaded our fields every year, munching on corn roots and challenging the dogs. One of the dogs with war wounds to show for. As for the Canada Geese (Outardes) print, in an effort to ease the viewer’s struggle to understand the topic, I segregated one goose, over a white area. I spoke about this technique in a previous blog post about colouring tessellations.
This new version of the same tessellation has refined edges, as it is way easier to modify contours with software, rather than cardboard cutouts. I also used software to render the volumes and textures on the birds. Still cartoonish as it seems to be my style, but a little less flat. I was able to modify the beak to more resemble an actual Canada Goose. I kind of like this new dude.