Mark Smith Fish Art Logo

Mark Smith
Fish Art

Artist Statement

Like many artists,
I draw inspiration from the natural world around me
...to read more about the statement

About The Artwork

Gyotaku: "Gyotaku" is Japanese for fish rubbing. A direct relief print is made by pressing rice paper over an actual fish. The same technique is used to make prints from leaves, shells, pieces of driftwood, or anything else from nature. This medium provides a very detailed representation of the subject while still allowing for the artist's own interpretation of the natural world.

Hand-Cast Paper: Incorporating gyotaku imagery into hand-cast paper pieces is the artist's signature work. To arrive at the finished paper piece requires a series of processes. A full-size model is first constructed of sand , rocks , or willow branches. Wet plaster is poured over the model and when it dries, it becomes the negative or mold for the final piece. The fish prints are then composed face down on top of the plaster mold. Cotton pulp is blended with water and screened onto the plaster mold, on top of the fish prints. The fibers realign as the wet pulp is pressed down onto the plaster mold and the fish prints and paper piece become one.

New Paintings: Using fish prints along with other collage materials in acrylic paintings on canvas is a new direction for the artist. Building a painting presents different challenges and requires learning new skills. Many of these paintings are landscapes and the fish prints are now landscape elements, just like buildings and clouds. These new paintings are called "fishscapes".


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