August 10 Scratch Board Art

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My unfinished Scratch Art Dragon

“I have a simple philosophy: fill what’s empty, empty what’s full. Scratch where it itches.” Alice Roosevelt Longworth

Today I went to a free class at the South Broadway Cultural Center. The class was a Scratch Board Art Class. I didn’t really know what that meant but wanted to try it anyway. I think I’ve seen the art without really understanding the amount of work that went into it. Scratch Board art is scratched and scraped with a tool that looks like a scalpel. The paper is coated in white China Clay then topped with India Ink. As you use your scalpel-like tool to scratch and scrape the surface it makes a beautiful picture. You have to think in the negative, if that makes sense. When creating a piece of art like this, it makes you think of things backwards. We are used to seeing dark images on white paper. This art starts out all dark and you have to create the white spaces. I didn’t have enough time in class to finish mine, because it took me such a long time to draw the dragon on a white piece of transfer paper then copy it to the black paper then start to etch, so it’s basically just my outline at this point. I drew it free-hand, which I didn’t know I could do. I am a different type of artist, not really a pen-in-hand type but I guess I surprised myself.

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