During his IEA residency, Nick proposed to combine photographic information with hand and digitally drawn information, using a variety of digital and traditional print media outputs, for use in his images of signage in colorful but desolate landscapes.  He experimented with the large-format Cannon printers, and the laser cutter in order to be able to generate imagery with different surface and color characteristics.

Working with our Large Format Digital Printers Nick explored prints that combine digital printing with traditional methods, related to an ongoing series of work. Making a small variable edition of a 40″x52″ print Nick saw heavy exploration in relief-print methods. Each print was inked slightly more ink after the initial print, until the last few prints were opaque and vivid, while the initial prints remained light and airy. By utilizing a laser-cut template Nick inked each woodblock individually and then placed them into their desired cut-out.

Screen-print was used to combined a graphic look with the photo-realistic digital layer. In order to ensure a clean and consistent registration section of the print were masked off while printing the screen layer to retain a crisp-edge through the piece: this allowed Nick to print a “full bleed” while not accidentally spilling over his image into the borders. I also made several 26x35inch screenprint experiments, using appropriated Renaissance imagery of clouds, rocks, and grass.

Nick in the IEA Studio
Nick inking wood-blocks.
Nickin the Expanded Media printshop, preparing for printing wood-cuts onto a Large-format Digital Print.
Nick masking off area in preparation for Screen-Printing.
Nick hanging work in Expanded Media Crit-Space.
Nick with his completed print.
Completed Print

In addition to his experimental Large-Format Digital prints Nick also produced several photogravure prints. The images featured were taken from research photos acquired during his residency.

“Webb’s Crossing NW” – 1/3 Nick’s Photogravure Prints


“Webb’s Crossing and 21” – 2/3 Nick’s Photogravure Prints
“Webb’s Crossing” – 3/3 Nick’s Photogravure Prints

Nicholas Ruth is the Class of ’64 Endowed Professor of Art at Hobart and William Smith Colleges, in New York.  Ruth received a BA from Pomona College, and earned an MFA in Painting from the Meadow’s School of Art at Southern Methodist University.  His work has been included in more than 100 exhibitions nationally and internationally, including the 9th Triennale Mondiale de l’Estampe Camalieres, the 2019 IPEP India Juried Print Exchange, 2nd Global Print 2015 Portugal, the Pacific States Biennial, and the Atlanta Print Biennial.  He has received recognition from the Dallas Museum of Art, the Print Center, and the New York State Council on the Arts.