The Vision of Printmaking Artists
Printmaking is an ancient art, dating back to at least the second century CE in China. The techniques on display here (woodcut, monoprint, collagraph, intaglio) are only a small sample of the multitude of processes by which prints are produced.
Growing up in the rural South, I was surrounded by the smells and forms of nature. Because of this, I am especially drawn to the variety of animal shapes as seen in my body of work.
To create these images, I employ the use of the collagraph printmaking process along with monoprinting. Hopefully, my prints translate those earlier childhood observations to the viewer.
Throughout my life, I have spent many hours outside working with plants, hiking in national forests, and exploring foreign cities. I observed there is much beauty and detail within the physical world we pass by every day and never notice. The incredible patterns, lines, shapes, and textures defining our environment have become a primary basis for my prints, which often draw attention to parallels between natural and man-made objects. Items found on the beach such as seashells, upon closer inspection, have similar lines and structures to staircases. A conical shell follows the same vortex curve of spiral steps.
Incorporating field notes and photographs together with imagination, layering, and unusual combinations, my work highlights less obvious relationships into a seamless composition to force a visual comparison. Manipulating visual information from my life experiences and study in nature is the starting point. Then each layer of an image becomes more abstract focusing on line, shape, and texture to make a cohesive visual contrast.
Through printing, and book arts, I create a window into the similarities often overlooked. The process of drawing and tracing the images over and over allows my eye to focus on the connections between the natural and man-made objects. Through the progression of re-drawing I simplify and compare attributes such as leaves and boats, both of which have bilateral symmetry and strong rib structures. In the sequence of printing layers of colors the man-made and natural objects begin to converge illuminating the comparison.
Whitney Broadaway grew up playing in the woods of Central Florida. Her passion was, and always will be, to hold and cuddle every living creature she encounters. Her father carved wooden sculptures and her mother was a poet, so it is no surprise that she combined these two skills into carving woodcuts and composing artist books. Broadaway graduated with a BFA in Drawing and Printmaking from the University of Central Florida in 2010. After graduation, she spent four years as the Conservator for UCF's Special Collections & University Archives before becoming the Collections Manager at the Orange County Regional History Center in downtown Orlando. There, she uses her background in conservation and art to care for the historic collection and assist with the development of award winning exhibitions. Broadaway has exhibited nationally and internationally, and strives to capture the whimsy of the local fauna she grew up with.