"There is no excellent beauty that hath not some strangeness in the proportion" Francis Bacon 1561-1626

Monday, 21 March 2016

And yet more trials…

There has been little time for practical work this week except a few more trials with mostly collagraph plates and combining some scrap prints with different plates to see what happens.

blues 

Printing lightly on thin paper gives a lovely soft grainy effect and subtle overlapping colour mixes.

blue-4    blues-det   

And a combined lino, collagraph and a bit of chine-colle

vine

Some accidents can really help, especially when, what you are actually trying to do, isn’t working. (often)
It’s always worth looking at some tiny details which could be enlarged and developed into new prints.

berries-2     berries-1

It’s also quite useful to have scrap prints to use for something else, a trial book jacket perhaps..
Ah yes ! And here is one I made earlier, out of scraps…There is nothing in it yet, it’s just a sort of book in waiting and will probably remain so.. 

 book

Spring though is definitely springing here…many bees, many birds and much frogspawn, lovely! I am having a few days off to dig the garden. Back after Easter.

Friday, 11 March 2016

More print trials. Collagraphs this time..Hmmm

This week has been taken up with more print trials and thoughts about my cast of characters as well as some thesis reading.

I have only made a few proper intaglio printed collagraphs before, usually preferring to print card plates as relief prints. But there is much to love about the intaglio method especially in the hands of someone as outstanding as Katherine Jones. I attended her workshop this weekend which was a fascinating insight into her working methods.
Courses given by master printers are both inspirational and frustrating, because they make it all seem so simple.
It isn’t…it so SO isn’t!

However the trials I made will be very useful and I am beginning to understand how I can combine printing methods to created the images and effects I want. There is much to learn. These are some trials from the weekend.

dk1dk2

Fish are always a nice design-y subject to play with. These fish actually do have a special significance for the project.

fish

Two inkings of the same plate. This time a larger A3 plate.

2-prints

You can achieve some very beautiful, if accidental, effects.

detail

At the moment, every time I lift the paper away from the plate to reveal a print, it’s a complete surprise. If anything lovely happens it is purely accidental. Hopefully that will change and I will have a little more control.

I carried on playing when I returned home and tried to make some systematic comparison plates using slightly different methods and materials

Home trials with different inking

spiraltree

Trials with different plates to compare marks and inking and surface.

redtree

But it’s messy! I am not yet sure about collagraphs. They are thirsty for ink, laborious to ink up, and very very messy. Or I should say I am very messy, despite gloves. Me, my clothes, the paper, the press and the house are all covered in ink.

The Characters
Then I am also beginning to think about the characters. They include 17th century explorers, botanists, gardeners, herbalists, doctors and apothecaries. The process you choose to use can really change how you approach the imagery. I am playing with ideas, with methods, scale and imagery to find out what might suit. In arty terms its called “visual language”!…

Trialling a simple bold lino print of a face.No one in particular ..just a trial.

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2 figure sketches and accompanying linos as yet unprinted.

characs

They will hopefully appear in some guise next week….

Friday, 4 March 2016

Trial Books and One Well Registered Print.

I made up three of small trial seed prints into books as an exercise in binding, 2 case bound and one stab stitch. I made a quick cover design and the results are not bad. I will improve. Hopefully before I have to submit final work. What that will be is still a mystery to me but the more I make the clearer my ideas become.

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I was thinking about the next stage of plant growth and made a small seedling print which might be included in one of the final books. The most exciting thing was to actually get a decent registration on one print.

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Awesome registration Val…:)