In her newest artwork, Valerie Lueth has grown intricately intertwined roots and branches to form a 4-color woodblock print titled ‘BRANCHING.’ Lueth, who owns and operates Tugboat Printshop in Pittsburgh, hand-illustrated one key block and three additional color blocks to combine black, yellow, blue, and grey in the formation of the tree.
To create the tree’s subtle shifts in tone and shape, Lueth first drew and carved the key block on 3/4 inch birch plywood. Next, she transferred the image via press onto the three color blocks, and hand-drew and carved each of the three color blocks. Finally, using very precise alignment, Lueth printed all four blocks sequentially on one sheet of paper to create the complete artwork.
Valerie Lueth was raised on the rural South Dakota prairie, self-motivated to draw, build, tinker, and grow from her earliest years. After attending the University of South Dakota and receiving her BFA in Printmaking in 2004, she moved to Nashville, TN, working remotely as a full time video game concept artist & game texturer while continuing to produce prints & drawings and exhibit as a working artist.
Valerie co-founded Tugboat Printshop in 2006 after moving to Pittsburgh and has been actively producing limited edition woodcut prints since that time. In 2016, Valerie began independently operating Tugboat, evolving from collaborative works into a new body of intricately hand-crafted solo works in woodcut and drawing.
Valerie’s love of art, craftsmanship, print technique, photography, writing, design, nature, bootstrapping and sharing with others has propelled her unique path in the arts. Valerie’s drawings have been featured in New American Paintings and the prints she has made & lent her hand to are collected worldwide.
The artist describes BRANCHING as “an image of generation and growth,” and it scales thirty inches tall and twelve inches wide. The print is currently available for pre-order on the Tugboat Printshop website. Lueth also shares her works in progress on Instagram.