Favourite: Cathie Bleck

I record and observe nature's sensory detail in inks and clay in a medium which has an affinity with wood engraving, illustrating opposing forces.

Cathie Bleck, Illustration Now (Vol. 3)

Featured in Juxtapoz in 2012, Cathie Bleck stole my heart with her delightfully dark illustrations many years ago. I am able to recognise Bleck's intricate work, the undulating curved lines and details that show a masterful command of her chosen medium.

Working into kaolin clay, Cathie builds layers of inks and clay before working back into them, scratching and removing to reveal what is underneath. This process creates works that lie in the space between 2D and 3D, giving the artworks a textural quality. In reading about how Cathie Bleck creates her pieces, I can only assume it is an unforgiving, relatively new process, one of which that takes time and patience (of which I don't have).

Cathie grew up in a limitless-creative household, where there was a love for the natural form and natural beauty, which is reflected in Bleck's artworks that display emotion with every individual line. Within the details of the artwork there is an acceptance and appreciation of flaws that a fluid line creates.

Much of the works created by Cathie Bleck remind me of lino cuts and World War two propaganda, there is a power in the use of black, and a fascination with darkness, both of which draw me (and hopefully you) in.

Cathie Bleck began her career as an artist in Chicago, and has been published in a variety of media, as well as several murals and many illustrated  books. She has received awards for her work. Cathie Bleck currently lives in Cleveland, Ohio.

For more information on Cathie Bleck you can visit her website (here) or follow her on social media: (facebook, twitter, Pinterest).