Welcome to Woodblock.com

The entry point for the collection of websites belonging to woodblock print maker David Bull.

Current news:

The Main WebsiteThe 'Table of Contents' page

This front page for the site gives immediate access to all the content - an overview of my work, images of all the prints I have made, stories about them, on-line copies of my newsletter, and many many other things to see and read.

Scrolling down the page you are now on will give an alternate method of visiting much of the site - showing each of the major sections as though they were independent websites ...

Special note!: My RichMedia eBook is now available! It is entitled 'Your First Print', and is a complete overview of the making of a woodblock print using the traditional Japanese techniques. This is the book I needed thirty years ago when I was starting out in this craft! If this sort of book had been available to me back then, then who knows, I might have actually turned out to be a good printmaker! :-)

Here is the page of information on the book, as well as a link to a free sample download of more than 1/3 of the book content, so that you can see for yourself!

My YouTube ChannelYouTube Channel

Over the past few years, I have come to discover that having video of my work is a very powerful tool to help people better understand woodblock printmaking. Everybody thinks they 'know' what a woodblock print is, but very few people have seen them being produced. And the production process is such fun! Please visit the YouTube Channel, where there are now many dozens of videos available. Some introduce the activities of my Mokuhankan publishing venture, some will let you get to know our various staff carvers and printers, and others will bring you up-to-date on whatever projects are currently on our 'front burner'


After many years of working completely alone - doing all the carving and printing by myself - I decided to 'open up' and establish a 'real' workshop some years ago. It has now grown to encompass nearly two dozen people, working as carvers, printers, sho assistants, and a group of support staff (packing, shipping, etc.) We have a shop in the Asakusa district of Tokyo, and also have a full online catalogue of prints.

Ukiyoe HeroesChibi HeroesUkiyoe Heroes
Chibi Heroes / Portraits / Henry Manga

The summer of 2012 saw an astonishing upheaval in life here at woodblock.com After nearly a quarter century of focussing my work almost exclusively on reproduction of classical designs (with a small amount of my own original work thrown in), I have now become involved in a very large scale project working with a contemporary artist - the American illustrator Jed Henry. We ran an astonishingly successful Kickstarter campaign together, and the various print series that have been growing out of that are now featured here. Please take a look at our work on the Ukiyoe Heroes, and its 'sub' series, the Chibi Heroes, Ukiyoe Heroes Portraits, and The Henry Manga. I'm sure you won't be disappointed!

The Arts of Japan'The Arts of Japan'

After a very successful run for the previous Mystique series, I can say completely honestly that this next print project - which will be the third in the Treasure Chest series - is truly 'by popular demand', as many of the collectors wrote and asked me to do another one. The theme this time is both simple, and yet very deep. I will be exploring 'The Arts of Japan'.

Note: because of the immense time-pressure on Dave from the Mokuhankan venture - with the new shop in Asakusa - his work on this series is presently 'on hold', and current subscribers are waiting for it to resume. New subscriptions are not currently being accepted ...

Mystique of the Japanese Print'Mystique of the Japanese Print'

Hollywood can do it, so why can't we? The previous Hanga Treasure Chest was very successful, and appreciated by the collectors, so it's time for a sequel! The Mystique of the Japanese Print is a set of 18 beautiful prints, which will bring to the collectors a good overview of just what it is that makes traditional Japanese prints so beautiful.

Note: this series was completed in early 2012, and Dave's original batch of prints are now sold out. The blocks are in wonderful condition though, so the prints are being re-issued by the craftsmen of the Mokuhankan venture ...

My Solitudes'My Solitudes'

In a radical departure from the previous two decades of making reproductions of traditional Japanese prints, this project featured designs of my own creation. My Solitudes was a three-year project (summer '07 ~ spring '10), which consisted of a set of 12 woodblock prints, each paired with a chapter of a book, together illustrating and describing three of my 'private' nature retreats through the course of a year.

Now that the series is complete, the 12 prints/books are available either as a complete set all at once, or as a monthly 'subscription' over the course of a year.

'Scroll Project'Scroll Project

After the long year of work making 24 prints in the Treasure Chest, I flipped right the other way for 2006 - I produced just one print, making a reproduction of an early Edo-era painting, in scroll form. I also documented the process as I went along, and you can read about it on these pages.

'Hanga Treasure
          Chest''Small Print Collection'

As a result of prodding from collectors to do another series of small prints that incorporates a display stand, I introduced the Small Print Collection in 2006. There are ten prints in this set, making it my most affordable print series ever! The prints can all be seen on the pages here.

'Hanga Treasure
          Chest''Hanga Treasure Chest'

Introducing my Treasure Chest - a set of 24 postcard-size prints, packed together with a storage box that doubles as a beautiful display stand. For yourself, or for a friend, it is a dynamite gift idea ... a beautiful new print arrives in your mailbox every two weeks!

Read all about it on these pages.

Note: the series was sold out years ago ... but the web pages will of course remain ...

'Beauties of Four Seasons''Beauties of Four Seasons'

This section of the website showcases my series of four prints based on the bijin (beautiful women) theme.

Here is the 'concert programme' ...

The 'Surimono Albums'The 'Surimono Albums'

This website displays the delicate and beautiful 'surimono' prints that I made in the five years following the end of my ten-year long 'Hyakunin Isshu' print series. Of particular interest may be the detailed series of photographs showing each step in the production of one of the prints. Get to the site through its main index page.

The 'Hyakunin Isshu' print seriesThe 'Hyakunin Isshu' print series

This website contains the complete set of images of my reproduction set of Katsukawa Shunsho's designs for the famous 'One Hundred Poems from One Hundred Poets'. Making the complete set took me ten years - from 1989 through 1998. It won't take you that long to browse the prints and stories!

The 'Woodblock RoundTable'The 'Woodblock RoundTable'

Using blogging tools, I have created the RoundTable as a place where my collectors (and fans) can offer their comments and discussion on my work.

And it's not just the woodblock prints that are featured ... there is also a large selection of essays to provoke discussion ...

The 'Woodblock Shimbun'The 'Woodblock Shimbun'

Perusing media material is an excellent way to get familiar with my work, so I have scanned/ripped/typed a number of items - TV programs, newspaper clippings, and radio interviews - and included them here in my 'Woodblock Shimbun'. You will find a 'Table of Contents' over on the Index Page. Please take a look at some of the material; I think you might enjoy it!

A Story A WeekA Story A Week

This collection of stories had its genesis in pieces I submitted to various weekly papers in Tokyo. Although these newspapers and magazines are aimed at Japanese people who wish to improve their English reading and comprehension skills, it seems that my writing style - straightforward and familiar - is enjoyable for native speakers too. So a couple of years ago I decided to publish a series of stories on my own, on a special web site devoted to them.

The Giant StrideThe Giant Stride - Woodblock Prints of John Edgar Platt

English printmaker John Platt died in 1967, leaving behind a collection of 40 woodblock prints.

This website brings this neglected and important artist back into view again. A unique combination of two traits - he was both a thorough and meticulous craftsman and a man with a 'vision' - placed him in a unique position in the history of woodblock printmaking.I hope you will enjoy seeing his work, which deserves much wider attention. The website is located at: http://woodblock.com/platt

Encyclopedia of Japanese Printmaking TechniqueEncyclopedia of Japanese Printmaking Technique

Very slowly, over a period of many years, I am collecting and publishing information on the traditional Japanese printmaking techniques. This section of the website will never be 'finished', but there is now quite a lot of interesting and useful information here ...

Here is an outline of the topics covered in the Encyclopedia ...
Tools and Materials
- for carving, for printing ...
- wood, pigments, papers ...
- the workshop
- suppliers

Basic Printmaking Process
- Overviews
- preparation
- carving
- printing

Technical Notes
- other carving techniques
- other printing techniques
- one-point lessons
- troubleshooting

General Aspects of
Woodblock Prints

- reproductions of books on wood-
block printmaking...

- illustrated 'exhibitions' of:
- 'Collaborative' prints
- 'Turn of the Century' prints
- 'David's Choice'...
- Amateur printmaking in Japan...

- Japanese printmaking

Visits to Craftsmen

(A more detailed outline of the Encyclopedia is here)