When I think of woodblock prints, my mind instantly floods with the canonical image of Hokusai's wave, shown above. [ The Great Wave Off Kanagawa, from Thirty Six Views of Mount Fuji, 1823 - 1829 ].

Lately, however, I've been reading up about traditional printing techniques and came across some other artists and prints that are extraordinary - and some that are almost contemporary... The print below is from Takeji Asano [ 1900 - 1999 - what a lifetime !!! ]. Moonlight at Wakanoura, Wakayama, was created in 1953, but not likely printed until the 1960's or '70's. I love the way the lights are portrayed here - the cutout shape the moonlight forms in the sky and the directional beacons the lanterns etch from the water.

[ courtesey hanga gallery, www.hanga.com, $250.00 for 10" x 15" oban print ]

[ courtesey hanga gallery, http://www.hanga.com/ , $850.00 for 9.5" x 10" shikishiban print ]

Kawase Hasui, Himeji Castle, 1930, from limited edition of 200 printed by Kato

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