An Honest Line
THE ARTIST: Joel Ostlind
KNOWN FOR: Moody, fine-point etchings of evocative Western scenes.
COWBOY WITH A SKETCHBOOK: “I was working on a ranch in Montana, and the advertising company Leo Burnett would come out and shoot photographs for Marlboro. I showed some drawings to the art director and a photogrpaher, and I was encouraged."
AT HOME IN WYOMING: “My work relates to the West because that's pretty much all I've ever known. We live just a few miles from the Bighorn Mountains in a little lot house. The light of Western landscape is always there for me."
ON ETCHING: “The honesty and simplicity of etching appeals to me. I hand-polish a copper plate that is the size of the final image, and clean it, and then melt onto it and roll out a thin layer of acid-proof wax. With an etching needle, I draw lines through the wax to expose the etchable copper. Once I have the drawing, I put the plate into a bath of corrosive liquid. It pulls the copper out. After the lines are etched, I take mineral spirits, remove the wax, roll ink onto the plate and into the lines, wipe the ink off of the smooth surface, lay that on a press, put a piece of slightly damp paper on top of it, and run it through the press. And bingo, there's a printed etching."
THE LURE OF FISHING: "On the River began with me driving down the road in Yellowstone Park. There was a fellow fishing in the river, and it was evening. I had that wonderful perspective of reflective light, so I could see things as a silhouette. There's a vicarious thrill of doing a drawing or etching of somebody really fishing well."
August 4 – 27, 2017:
Bighorn Rendezvous Art Show & Sale,
The Brinton Museum