Aloha and welcome to my website.

I am a Printmaker and Mixed Media Artist on the island of Maui working on one of a kind prints on silk and etched copper that is painted and clear coated.

I blend Intaglio printmaking with scroll mounting, metal work, and auto body skills.  Please look around and contact me if you have any questions.

The world Around Us

Commissioned Piece  -3′ x 8′ Etched, Inked and Coated Copper framed in African Mahogany. I love doing commissioned work. This was done for a wonderful couple with a beautiful home in Makena. The piece represents the fire lava and ocean that is Maui as well as it has some polished copper areas that show vignettes of the surrounding area.

Ebb & Flow

48 x 60 Printed on Japanese Silk from four individual Copper Plates, Scroll Mounted together with Copper Leafing. One of the technically hardest works I have ever done. This represents lava flowing into the sea and the black sand beaches that are created when it does.

Hurricane Blues

18 x 24 Deeply Etched, Inked, Painted and Coated Copper. When El Nino heats up the Pacific nature flings large storms in our direction. Fortunately our island home has been able to ward them off.


33 x 36 printed on Indian Silk with Copper Leafing. Equality means different things to different people. To me at a base level I believe we all want the same things. A happy, healthy and better life for ourselves and loved ones. With that in mind wouldn’t it be better if we treated each other as equals

Sunset Horizon

32 x 38 Etched, Inked, Painted, and Coated Copper Mounted on Japanese Silk and framed in Maple. Living in Hawaii our sunsets can be other worldly with scarlet clouds lit by the sun and disappearing over the horizon.


30 x 36 Printed on Japanese Silk. I love this special silk from Kyoto with subtle Cranes in the background. It is part of my Enso series which are all one of a kind. To me it means that a certain point in your life you realize that imperfection is perfect.


18 x 24 Etched and clear coated copper. There is always one person that has to go their own way. This etching was done when Robin Williams went his own way.


30 x 34 A one of a kind print on scroll mounted Antique Kimono Silk. While visiting the Stone Tree Vineyard in Eastern Washington I picked up some pieces of fossilized trees. This is my version although I had to enhance nature by adding my own colors.

Ocean Waves

24 x 36 Printed on Japanese Silk. When the surf is big on the North shores of Hawaii you will see waves to the Horizon.  


45 x 39 printed on Japanese Silk. Sometimes as in nature simple and elegant is the best

Circle of Life

18 x 24 Etched, Inked, Painted and Coated Copper. Life is short and never perfect. One day your parent is pushing you in a stroller and the next you are pushing them in a wheel chair.

Twin Towers

32 x 38 Printed on Japanese Silk. After an emotional visit to the NYC Memorial I wanted to do something that would show the Spirit of the Twin Towers rising over the city.

Story Lines

Non-traditional Hawaiiana. Etched copper mounted onto Koa wood forms.

Latest Work

The standard size of my images is 18 x 24 with the silk border they are generally 30 x 36 depending on the silk used. I am always working on new prints and copper plates. Please check back often as I update regularly.

Abstract: Relief

I like pushing copper to its limits often etching the plate for up to 24 hours creating dramatic relief images in the metal. I then hand ink in multiple colors and print on silk, occasionally paper.


Metal Work

Starting with mirror finish copper sometimes I like a plate enough on its own that I may never print it after etching it for 24 hours and controlling the way it oxidizes, I then clear coat it to keep it as rustic image of its own. After I have printed an image I may ink the plate in multiple colors and let the ink dry before clear coating to seal the copper and ink together making a companion piece for the original print.


Abstract: Aquatint

With my aquatint images I use resin melted on to the copper plates to control the subtle tonal qualities going from white to black. I hand ink in black and print on different types of silk and each one is unique.



My figures range from Nudes to Buddhist influenced images. They are done in the Aquatint technique and I try to show the aura that I feel each image has.

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Artist Statement

trannyThere are several reoccurring themes in my work one of the most important to me is color and texture. Some years back I worked primarily with representational images. In more recent years I have moved more to contemporary abstract work. That said I sometimes drift back and do what I call non traditional Hawaiiana using semi abstract images to tell the story of Hawaii, it’s discovery and peoples.

Blending traditional European style of etching ( Intaglio ) and inks with Asian silk and it’s sense of feel. My hope is that all my images will create peacefulness and serenity in the viewer by giving them a feeling of something is old yet new.

trannyBeing Eurasian myself East meets West is part of who I am.

trannyI start with polished copper plates which for me represent new life and how perfect it is. I then etch ( age ) my plates in acid for 24 hours one hour at a time. This simulates the bumps and bruises, highs and lows of life creating deep relief images etched in to the plate. As in life itself each plate and print tells its own story.

trannyI hand ink the copper plates and print on silk I source from Japan. I will only print an image between one to three times but each is one of a kind as they are printed on different types of silk or with different color inks. Sometimes I will etch a plate and never print it but just turn it into copper art right away.

trannyWhether printing from the copper plate or not I will then take the deeply etched metal and ink, paint and clear coat it. The clear coating gives it a 3D effect but also adds UV protection so the copper is so durable it could even be in an outdoor setting. The copper can be mounted on silk, framed in wood or hung as is to give it a more modern look. Sometimes I bend the copper before painting and mount onto wood forms making it a sculptural wall piece.

Early Years to Now
trannyI grew up 20 miles North of San Francisco and feel fortunate to have lived in an area that had so much natural beauty as well as cultural stimulus both visually and musically.

trannyOne of my early memories was being taken to a Disney animation movie ( Fantaisa ) and I thought how great it would be to draw and paint and bring things to life. I thought that would be the best job in the world. Throughout my schooling years I continued to draw and paint and started experimenting with textiles and Batik when I was in high school.

trannyWhen I got to college I found Print Making and a light bulb went on. I think being able to take a flat piece of metal and give it depth, texture and then create something new with color and design is a special skill.

trannyI began working as a Print Maker in 1977 in California at College of Marin where I started working with Aquatint and came up with the innovative idea to use an airbrush to spray a resist ( Ashphaltum ) on the copper plates that I etch my images on.

trannyMore recently I have been exploring how to push copper to its limits often etching the copper for up to 24 hours creating deep relief images in the copper and then hand inking in multiple colors and printing on silk I source from Japan.


Jim Powlan




Juried Show
Art Maui 2019
Pacific States Biennial North American Print Exhibition 2018
Art Maui 2018
Wailoa Center Summer Juried Show – Hilo – 2018
Art Maui – 2015
Hui No’eau Visual Art Center Annual Juried Show – 2015
Hawaii Craftsman Annual State Wide Juried Exhibition – 2014
Art Maui – 2013
Pacific States Biennial National Print Exhibition at U.H. Hilo – 2012
Art Maui – 2010
Art Maui – 2009
Art Maui – 2007
Hui No’eau Visual Art Center Annual Juried Show – 2006


Curated Shows
Hui No’eau Visual Art Center – Teacher / Student Show – 2013
I was asked by Hui No’eau to juror the Print Making Dept. for the Annual Teacher / Student Show.

Artist Show Case – Four Seasons Hotel – Saturdays 8 – 1:30
Hana Coast at Travassa Hotel
Maui Hands Makawao

Mullowney Printing – San Francisco
Hui Press – Maui
College of Marin – California

Art in Public Places
Maui Mayors Office Lobby – Permanent Display
Maui Memorial Medical Center Lobby – Permanent Display
Gannon’s Restaurant – Wailea Golf Course – Permanent Display

Artists Show Case – Four Seasons Wailea – Lower Lobby on Saturdays. ( 8:00 – 1:30 )
Maui Community College – Class Act Restaurant

Art Maui Board of Directors 2013 – Present





Please be aware that Hawaii time is 3 hours earlier than West Coast and 6 hours earlier than East Coast…

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