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Wood Print Block | by FernShade
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Wood Print Block

Hand carved shesham-wood print block from India. Each is one-of-a-kind and designs are often unique to particular regions. Nearly a lost art, this handcrafted work will soon disappear, being replaced by automated web presses and silk screening processes. It is only a growing appreciation of this craft in urban and export markets that is keeping it alive.

The block carving process is tedious and demands an exceptional degree of skilled craftsmanship. The most skilled artisan in a block making shop, often the owner, will work on a piece such as this one.


A block starts out as a planed slice of shesham wood. The design is traced on to the wood's planed surface. The wood is then chiseled to the depth of a third of an inch. The precision that a master block maker achieves with his meager arsenal of hammer and chisel is truly extraordinary.


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Taken on August 7, 2009