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Carving Cthulhu continued

Corrected center claw

At this point in the process, it makes sense to continue outlining with that 1mm u gouge. Outlines may be expanded later depending on the effect I want. Thin outline carving tends to simply make elements stand out from the background, while wider outlining can be used to create a halo effect. In the first photo you can see I’ve made a slight modification to the shape of the center wing claw.

All outlines now delineated in 1mm

Here’s a view of the block after all outlining was completed. You’ll note I haven’t done any outlining in the lower portion of the block since it will be solid black and I haven’t yet decided I want a black outline around the portions of the figure over the black. If, after I ink and proof print the block, I want a thin white line to make the figure pop out of the black, I can easily add it in. I can always remove more wood to create white, but I can’t always add it back in. Always err on the side of too little carving, because you can always carve more.

Is anyone else craving seafood now?

Now we get into the fun part! Although I am referencing the original Cthulhu woodcut and do want this rendition to relate to it, my carving style has developed since 2010. I may end up clearing some of these marks out after proofing, but I know I want the arms to be more textured than the original. I’m starting at the claw tips of the lower arm and moving on up. The spots I originally drew aren’t being tightly adhered too, I prefer to let them progress naturally as I work — with a few markings to remind me where I want a few larger black spots left because I don’t want a symmetrical pattern.

I’ll be moving on up that arm now, be sure to check in on the H.P. Lovecraft Film Festival Kickstarter for updates on other rewards available to backers. The Kickstarter will be over in less than 2 weeks and the special event packages are rapidly being snapped up.

Autumn show calendar

September 15th and 16th, Seattle, Washington

Woodcuts from the Arcanum Bestiarum will be debuting this week at the Seattle Esoteric Book Conference. September 15th and 16th 8am-7pm in the Orcas Room at the Seattle Center. Art show is free and open to the public as well as conference attendees. Wall space at the EBC is limited, so be sure to peruse the print racks for additional works.

October 4th – November 17, Corvallis, Oregon

Death and the Printmaker will be part of the 10th Around Oregon Annual at the Arts Center. Opening reception Thursday October 11, 5:30–7:30 PM.

The Arts Center
700 SW Madison Ave.
Corvallis, OR 97333

October 5th – 26th, Portland, Oregon

A selection of six Arcanum Bestiarum prints will be part of Splendorporium’s Annual Tarot Show. Opening Reception October 5th from 7-9 PM.

3421 SE 21st Ave.
Portland, OR 97202

November 3rd – 11th, Beaverton, Oregon

from the Arcanum Bestiarum has been juried into the 30th Annual Beaverton Visual Arts Showcase. Gala November 3rd from 7-9 PM. The Showcase will be held at:

Beaverton City Library
12375 SW 5th Street
Beaverton, OR 97005

Bestiary print pre-order

Note: purchasing of these prints is no longer a pre-order. Orders are currently shipping within 48 hours (excepting weekends and holidays).

In mid-September the original woodcuts from Arcanum Bestiarum will be officially debuting at the Esoteric Book Conference in Seattle. Although conference attendees will have the first opportunity to peruse the entirety of the bestiary prints including editions and artist proofs, we’re offering a pre-order on the two beasts already unveiled by Three Hands Press: the Raven and the Scorpion. More species will be made available for online ordering following the release of Arcanum Bestiarum

Lioness printer’s ornament

To thank you for your support, all pre-orders will include a signed open edition printer’s ornament. The ornaments measure 11 x 6.5″ (2 x 7″ block size) and are printed using the same ink and paper as the limited editions. Allow me to select one at random for you, or let me know your preference when ordering: Ant, Chimera, Dragon, Hawk, Lioness (seen above) Ram (may be seen here), or “Revels.”

Woodcut edition of 22

As with all of my prints, the Bestiary series were hand-carved in wood and printed on an etching press with archival oil based-black ink on hand-torn Rives BFK paper. I print with enough pressure to emboss the thick cotton rag paper and create as solid of a print as the wood will permit. Each print is titled, signed, and numbered.

Edition of 22 on Rives BFK
10.5 x 21.75″ (4.5 x 14.25″ block)

Woodcut edition of 33


Edition of 33
10.5 x 11″ (4.5 x 4.5″ block)

Orders may be placed via my Etsy shop.

Birth of a Raven

The phrase “hand-pulled print” refers to exactly what you see here. Hands (in this case belonging to print minion Bryn) pulling the print off the matrix (in this case a woodblock) after pressing (in this case via an etching press).

Pre-order on the Raven edition coming soon. Subscribe to our mailing list if you’d like to be e-mailed about pre-orders, special events, and new work.

Prints from Children of Cain

At long last I am able to share the pieces created for Michael Howard’s newest book, Children of Cain. Appearance of these artworks in and on the books varies depending on the edition type (standard hardcover, deluxe hardcover, and special hardcover). Please see Three Hands Press for more information on the book editions.

As with all of my prints, these were hand carved in wood and printed on an etching press with archival oil based-black ink, and off-white Rives BFK. Each print is signed and numbered. A limited quantity of lower numbered prints are available as matched number portfolio sets. See below for further details and ordering information.

First class shipping has been included in the prices below, please select the international option if you are located outside the United States of America.

As always, please contact me if you have any questions, concerns, or would like to arrange for another form of payment.

Prints from Children of Cain Matched number set
Red folio containing one each of A Union, Evocation, Sabbatic Goat, and Succubus.

Shipping options

"A Union" woodcut print

"A Union"

A Union

Woodcut print
11 x 14” paper size
9 x 12″ block size
First Edition, signed and numbered
Edition of 25

Shipping options

"Evocation" woodcut print

"Evocation" woodcut print


Woodcut print
11 x 14″ paper size
9 x 12″ block size
First Edition, signed and numbered
Edition of 50

Shipping options

"Sabbatic Goat" woodcut print

"Sabbatic Goat"

Sabbatic Goat

11 x 14″ paper size
9 x 12″ block size
First Edition, signed and numbered
Edition of 50

Shipping options

Succubus woodcut print


8 x 10″ paper size
6 x 8″ block size
First Edition, signed and numbered
Edition of 35

Shipping options

Transitional time

It is with great sorrow I must announce the passing of my father, R. Alan Rainey on October 9th. His death was not unexpected but has affected me profoundly. Because he was so proud of my work, I put on a brave face for the last weekend of Portland Open Studios, but since then I’ve had to retreat somewhat from the world. He was one of my greatest supporters and I feel his loss keenly.

Dad’s death came just as I am embarking upon my largest project to date. He was very excited about it (as am I) and I will be working on it as planned — neither of us would have it any other way. I will, however, be stepping back from most of my planned events for the next few months, and will not be teaching the Atelier Meridian woodcut workshop for the time being.

News updates will likely be sparse in the coming months, but I will have work in the OCAC student & alumni holiday sale Thanksgiving weekend, and online orders will be fulfilled as usual. Pieces of my work will also be appearing this month in group shows in the Chicago area, Vancouver, Washington, and Granada, Nicaragua.

Many thanks to you, my friends, family, patrons, and colleagues for your support and understanding.

HPLFF & Portland Open Studios Tour

I still think Cthulhu should be red, but I've colored this one green for the purists.

Autumn has arrived in Portland, and with it comes rain, fallen leaves, and some of my favorite annual events!

This Friday and Saturday, on September 30th and October 1st
, Arkham Bazaar will present a two-day H. P. Lovecraft Film Festival at the Hollywood Theater. Doors open each night at 7PM. You can pre-order one-day and two-day passes, or purchase them at the door.

The feature film for the first night of the Festival is the Lovecraft Historical Society’s presentation of Whisperer in the Darkness. On the second night, they will be showing Die Farbe, an adaptation of The Color Out of Space. I’m personally looking forward to both as they are two of my favorite stories and word in the street is both films are excellent.

I’ll of course be there with all my Lovecraft related prints, including several unique hand-colored prints such as that fine green fellow above.

Portland Open Studios

I will once more be participating in the Portland Open Studios on October 8-9 and 15-16. This annual juried tour includes 100 artists who will be opening their studio doors to you both weekends. It is an incredible opportunity to get a glimpse of the inner workings of a wide variety of working artists’ studios, so come see us work! Tour Guides can be purchased online at or are available at all New Seasons, Art Media, participating artists and many other retail locations throughout the Portland metro area.

Current and Upcoming Shows

Necropolis at The Congregation Gallery in Hollywood, CA has been extended through September 9th! This is still the only place you can see and purchase my new Lovecraft print, “Cave Necrophagoi in sepulchris.”

Capybara -- hand colored artist proof

Siren Nation’s Paint Your Art Out event is coming up fast. Paint Your Art Out is Siren Nation’s annual celebration of visual art, including live painting demos, silent art auction and a showcase of art by over 50 Northwest artists which all wall art is under $100. Other activities include free swag bags for the first 50 attendees, DJ, and cash bar.

I’ve included two hand-colored artist proof prints in the show, as well as a handsome framed Pertinax.

Location: Secret Society, 116 NE Russell Street, Portland, Oregon, 97202
When: August 18th, 6-9 pm
6-8:30 pm — Silent Auction and Art Demos.
Free Admission – Event is all ages

Pertinax framed

Also rapidly approaching is the 3rd annual Seattle Esoteric Book Conference, two days of rare books, art, performance, lectures, and fascinating people from all around the world. As both an artist and a bibliophile I look forward to this event all year. This year I’m one of the Featured Artists and will be debuting my contributions to Three Hands Press upcoming title, Children of Cain.

For those who cannot attend the EBC and are worried about editions selling out, I am offering a limited pre-order for the four Children of Cain related prints through September 1st. E-mail me at to request the preview sheet.

Last but not least, I may have a vendor table at the Portland H.P. Lovecraft Film Festival September 30th/October 1st and I will be opening my studio to visitors for the Portland Open Studios Tour the 2nd and 3rd weekends of October! Further details as these events approach.

Two openings and a goat

“The Hunt” is finally here! Opening reception Thursday, July 7th from 4pm-7pm.
Showing from July 7- July 27, 2011
The Hoffman Gallery on the
Oregon College of Art and Craft Campus
8245 SW Barnes Road,
Portland, OR 97225

This group show documents a gentle “scavenger hunt” within Oregon Health and Science University?s Historical Collection and Archives. The item “found” was interpreted or utilized as inspiration by each of the artists into the creation of a new piece (without any harm done to the item “found.”) It will be a great opportunity for artists and viewers to reflect on the importance of these collections. Artists will be on hand at the opening reception to speak about their experiences working on this project. For more information check out or

Also opening July 7th,
“If We Shadows” works from the PAN collection
Reception from 6pm-9pm
Showing through July 31st
Gallery 114
1100 NW Glisan
Portland, OR. 97209


Last but not least, new work! Executed as part of a larger group of work to be released later this year, the block gave me a surprising amount of trouble during printing, thus it has been dubbed:

Edition of 15 hand pulled woodcut prints
Signed and numbered
Oil-based ink on acid-free cotton rag paper (all archival materials)
4×4″ block 6×6″ overall
Available for $30.00 plus shipping (Note, for shipping outside the USA please select the “International” option.

"Pertinax" limited edition woodcut print

Full sheet trading card pre-order


Mi-go ACEO woodcut print

Last fall I created a set of Lovecraftian woodcut trading cards. At the time I had hoped to pull some good evenly inked & printed full sheet prints, but due to a series of studio renovations coupled with a busy schedule, it never happened. Now it is time to pull some prints!

Lovecraft artist trading card block

Early proof of the Lovecraft ACEO block

Are you interested in a full sheet print of the H.P. Lovecraft artist trading card block?

I am accepting pre-orders for full sheets prints through March 26th. $40.00 gets you one signed print on acid free Rives BFK, shipping included. Paper color preference? I have white, off-white, and buff on hand, just include a note if you have a preference, otherwise I’ll likely be working in off-white.

Worth noting: I’ve done a little more carving on the center portrait since that first printing, so it has changed slightly. 12×9″ block (properly centered on the sheet unlike the photo to the right), 14×11″ paper size. Finished prints will need a little time to dry, but will ship no later than April 15th. Send payment along with your shipping address via Paypal to or e-mail for alternative payment arrangements.