I pulled the first proof — State 1 — of "Cooper on the Bow" on Tuesday. Today, I pulled State #2. There's about an hour or so of carving and clean-up between the two states; still not ready to finalize the key block yet. Probably tomorrow, and I can print the key block, in register, on the other four remaining blocks.
The lines you see on the water won't show on the final print; they're to mark areas of color on the other blocks and will eventually be removed from this block — the "key" block. The key block is so called because it's always the outline or image-defining block, printed in the darkest color at the very last step. All of the other blocks of colored ink areas are printed in-register with this one, the master block.
By the way, the inspiration and wonderful photo this is based on was taken by fellow sailing enthusiast Michael Jones; the dog is his Welsh Terrier, Cooper. Michael and his wife Judith will be getting either the first print or my last, best artist proof with my thanks for letting me use such a great image. It practically sat up and begged to have a print made of it!
State #1 is on the left; today's proof on right. Both proofs are on mulberry paper using Gamblin Portland Intense Black oil-based ink, rubbed w/ a baren and a wooden spoon and hand-pulled. I'll pull one on the press using Rives BFK paper to make a final check before committing the key block.