There is a kind of print known as a monotype. To make the simplest monotype, you draw with ink or oil paint onto a smooth surface and then press a piece of paper down onto the finished drawing. Other ways of printing allow many impressions to be taken so that, in effect, the same work of art can be sold many times over. Why, then, do so many artists spend hours making monotypes? Why not just do the drawing straight onto the paper?
The answer is that a printed line has its own beauty that cannot be achieved any other way. There is a particular stillness about a print: a drawing can be corrected, retouched, or added to, and so can a painting, but a print is fixed and final. It was born finished. But its production was a series of chances: How thick was the ink? How heavy was the pressure? How flimsy and absorbent was the paper? How worn was the block or plate?
All of this is particularly true of woodcuts—particularly those cut into soft pine planks that cannot be smoothed down perfectly. Soft wood allows the grain of the wood to show through in the print. You choose your piece of wood with that in mind.
Soft wood renders fine detail impossible. If you try to render too small a detail, the wood crumbles and falls away. You are forced towards boldness and simplicity—two qualities I rate very highly.