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I think the ongoing demise of the handwritten letter & the ‘snail mail’ posting of cards or notes to mark occasions (special or otherwise) is rather sad. A txt msg or email will never be a good substitute for receiving an interesting piece of post – you can’t beat the excitement and anticipation of finding an intriguing envelope waiting for you in your letterbox! And what about penmanship?! Do the kids still handwrite… you know, with ink and actual pens?

I love this postcard, found a couple of years ago at the wonderful (but now sadly closed down update: open again! see comments :) Bowne & Co. Stationers in the South Street Seaport area of Lower Manhattan
(postcard © John Derian Company, Inc)

As I appear to be a confirmed (and grumpy!) Luddite when it comes to the ubiquity of digital communications I’m very happy to have some of my work included in the screen printing and papercutting sections of this nifty new book by Charlotte Rivers (published earlier this month):

‘A wolf and a bear in a winter wood’ – screen printed cards

papercut ‘snowflake’ cards

And I’m delighted to find myself sharing its pages with a super-talented friend…

Jesse Breytenbach, Cape Town, South Africa (letterpress & block printing)

… and a whole host of other great, old-school stationery practitioners. The book is divided into eight sections: hand-drawn illustration, screen printing, letterpress printing, block printing, digital illustration, calligraphy, papercutting and collage/3-D/sewn, and includes brief but informative descriptions of each technique followed by inspirational examples from around the globe. Here are some of my favourite discoveries from the book:

MrYen, Leeds, UK (papercutting)

Sesame Letterpress, New York, USA (letterpress printing)

Winged Wheel, Tokyo, Japan (letterpress printing)

Karolin Schnoor, London, UK (hand-drawn illustration)

Katharine Watson, Washington DC, USA (block printing)

If you’re looking for some inspirational stationery eye-candy the book can be found online here (Amazon UK) or here (Amazon US) >

reclaiming the screen after printing completed...

Remember these critters? Well, way back at the beginning of this year I spent a couple of days at the wonderful Amsterdams Grafisch Atelier (AGA) and made a limited edition screenprint of them. After a nine month gestation period (I’m not sure what they’ve been up to for the past nine months in the dark seclusion of their A1 storage box!) they have finally found their way into the world, and more specifically in to my brand-spanking-new etsy shop.

limited edition curiosity cabinet screenprint, detail

detail of the “Curiosity Cabinet” screenprint, in a very limited edition of 28

Also available in the shop are little packs of handmade ‘Greeting Cards from a Cabinet of Curiosities’… for when flowers just won’t do, and the only way to say it is with creatures preserved in bottles :)

octopus greeting card from a cabinet of curiosities

handmade, screenprinted greeting card

reclaiming the screen after printing completed...

reclaiming the screen after printing completed

The AGA is a fully equipped printmaking studio in the centre of Amsterdam, which I am very happy to have found and very grateful to have access to since completing a screenprinting course/workshop there towards the end of last year. The workshop was very informative and a lot of fun, and the studio spaces are fantastic! These two ‘Curiosity Cabinet’ projects are the only things I have printed there since completing the workshop so I am very much hoping to get back to the AGA soon for more printing fun and experimentation… it has been too long!

some of my work, available on etsy
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All images and words on this site are © suzanne norris / sakurasnow unless otherwise specified.

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Darkroom shenanigans! (My ‘darkroom’ is simply an area in my studio that can be enclosed by light-proof curtains when needed. Grayson had not yet discovered this fluid ‘space within a space’ and was mightily intrigued when I recently used it while exposing some screens for a new print) - #darkroom #lightproof #blackoutcurtains #black #grey #cat #greeneyes #grayson #explorer #onelungedwonder #MegaLung #ThinGreyDuke #catsofinstagram #screenprinting #zeefdruk #lowkey #lowkey_photography -
This was a relatively good inking session, but the intense & unprecedented heatwave we’ve been experiencing in NL has had some ‘interesting’ effects on my drawing ink – turning it (and me!) into a rapidly congealing, sticky mess. The second pic illustrates a particularly bad inking session when, on lifting the freshly dipped pen to continue drawing, the entire inkpot came with it and crash-landed across the drawing. Ugh… a sticky mess indeed! This is, of course, a very trivial effect of the #climatebreakdown we now find ourselves in the midst of, but no less vexing for its insignificance in the great scheme of things… #no_use_crying_over_spilt_ink - #drawing #inking #indianink #encredechine #dippen #spillage #blunder #stickymess #sunlight #shadow #organic #pattern #mycelium #tangled #chaos #climatecollapse - Thankfully today is a cooler, rainy day… perfect inking conditions! -
A jaw-dropping summer sunset in Haarlemtown this evening… - #sunset #summer #evening #sun #light #golden_orb #dusk #clouds #roofgardenviews #haarlem #dutch_sky #painterly #colour #awe_inspiring #nature -
A parade of pampered pups at London’s National Gallery (@national_gallery) - Details from the following paintings: - Gerard David, ‘Christ Nailed to the Cross’, c.1481 - Thomas Gainsborough, ‘The Morning Walk’, 1785 - Gerard David, ‘The Virgin and Child with Saints and Donor’, c.1510 - Luca Giordano, ‘Homage to Velazquez’, 1692-1700 - Francois-Hubery Drouais, ‘Madame de Pompadour at her Tambour Frame’, 1763-4 - #dogs #canidae #canis_lupus_familiaris #pomeraniansheepdog #lapdog #hairlessdog #skull #mementomori #art #arthistory #painting #oiloncanvas #oilonoak #colour #pattern #gallery #museum #nationalgallery #trafalgarsquare #london -
I will always make a beeline to this painting when visiting London’s National Gallery (@national_gallery). It captures the lashing winds and torrential rains of a tropical jungle storm beautifully, and I love the surprised expression on the tiger’s face captured at the moment lightning strikes. - Two details from Henri Rousseau’s ‘Surprised!’, 1891, oil on canvas - #art #arthistory #rousseau #henrirousseau #surprised #tiger #jungle #foliage #verdant #lush #tropical #storm #rain #lightning #painting #oiloncanvas #colour #gallery #museum #nationalgallery #trafalgarsquare #london #catsofinstagram
Vegan heaven in 16th Century Antwerp! (at London’s @national_gallery) - Two details from the painting ‘The Four Elements: Earth’ by Joachim Beuckelaer, 1569, oil on canvas. Swipe left for a mouth-wateringly vivid abundance of juicy fruits… and left again for this painting’s violent counterpoint: ‘The Four Elements: Fire’ (detail), Joachim Beuckelaer, 1570, oil on canvas - #vegan #fruit #vegetables #plants #plenty #crueltyfree #abundance #earth #compassion - #art #arthistory #beuckelaer #joachimbeuckelaer #flemish #painting #oiloncanvas #colour #gallery #museum #nationalgallery #trafalgarsquare #london -

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