Search results for 'transfer prints'

The Cheeky Cockchafer

2 Oct



Another of the small silkscreen prints I did recently. I started off by redrawing a little sketch of a snipe, but this time I did it onto cellophane with black acrylic paint. That formed a transparency for transferring to a photoscreen. I wanted to incorporate bits of rubbish to reflect the environment that much of our wildlife has to put up with. I used the net from a bag of fruit and put it through a photocopier onto a piece of good quality tracing paper. This became another transparency. I printed with Daler Rowney System 3 acrylic mixed 80:20 with screenprint medium onto Fabriano paper.




Here’s a variation on the theme, with a cheeky cockchafer sneaking in ….


26 Nov

Hiroshige 1

Husb and I spent a few days away in Northern Italy, exploring museums and galleries on a guided tour arranged by New Scientist magazine. We took in a fabulous exhibition, “Beyond The Wave”, of Japanese Ukiyo e printmakers, Hokusai and Hiroshige in Bologna. I was fascinated by their process. To my surprise, the artists themselves didn’t do any printmaking, but just provided the initial simple ink line drawing (which didn’t survive the process). The drawing was transferred to a number of blocks, up to fifteen depending on the amount of colours, and cut by a carver. Finally the blocks were handed over to a printmaker to produce the fabulous full-colour images that we’re used to seeing today. This process reminds me of that used in the production of modern comics, with the artist producing pencil drawings, handing them over to an inker and then to a letterer. Coincidentally, Hokusai and Hiroshige are a great influence on Japanese Manga and Anime.

In my small sketchbook, I made some little studies of the beautiful simple compositions of some of the prints. Most had very sparse detail and the artist’s original line drawings are usually quite basic. The richness of pattern and colour are down to the skills of the printmaker who often used a blending technique called Bokashi which gives beautifully graduated colours. Ukiyo e prints became very fashionable through Japonism and had an enormous influence on later 19th century and 20th century European art and artists including the Impressionists and post-Impressionists and individual artists including Cassatt, Degas, Toulouse-Lautrec and van Gogh.

The First Cuts

3 May

workers 3

Yesterday I posted about setting up to develop a linocut print while I was gallery-sitting at The Workers Gallery in Ynyshir. After I did an interim sketch from my original sketchbook drawing of a Neolithic standing stone, I transferred it (in reverse) to a piece of vinyl with a white conté crayon. I’m using vinyl rather than lino because it’s softer and easier to cut and also because it’s so much cheaper. I find that I get very inhibited when I use expensive materials and I want to be free and a bit experimental with this – I don’t want to get precious about it.

workers 4

I’m not going to cut a lot away at first, I’ve ruined a lot of blocks that way. I’m going to cut in stages and take proof prints as I go along to inform any more cutting that needs to be done. I’m aiming for a rough, simple, expressionist style. Here’s the first stage cut, inked up with a cheap water-based printing ink, waiting to be printed by hand using a plastic baren.



I have put my series of drawings en plein air of ancient Welsh monuments on Artfinder.  If you want to see more, please click on the image below or the Artfinder link at the top right of this page. This one is the legendary grave of Saint Elfys (Elvis) in Pembrokeshire, not for from the Presceli Mountains. Elfys? Presceli? Elvis Presley? Coincidence? hhhmmmm

St Elvis

The Stone In The Lower Wood

24 Jun

is coed


Continuing with thumbnail sketches from some of my original drawings, this is the Is Coed (Lower Wood) stone near Ferryside in Carmarthenshire. Ferryside is a gorgeous seaside village on a spectacular railway route from Swansea to Carmarthen that skips along right next to the coast for much of the journey. I’m doing the thumbnail drawings to get better acquainted with each stone before deciding which ones to develop into prints – etchings and lino blocks. It’s an important part of the process between the drawings in the field and a finished original print. It helps me to analyse the form of the drawing, what medium it would best be transferred to, what aspects to emphasise and minimise. I used a fine graphite stick (6B) onto a small piece of heavyweight textured paper from the Tate Gallery shop that I had prepared by sponging lightly with a sepia wash.


I’m travelling around South West Wales with archaeologist Dewi Bowen who is researching his new book on Neolithic / Bronze Age monuments. His previous book on the stones of Ancient Siluria (South East Wales) can be found here. Accompanying us is film maker Melvyn Williams who is recording a documentary about our experiences. Some of Melvyn’s short films can be seen here. I’m currently working on a series of expressive drawings of ancestral sites and if you want to see some of my other artworks, please click here.

Suzanne Valadon Screen

21 May

suzanne step 1


I’ve been away in Denmark for a week, visiting some dear friends, one of whom is a fellow printmaker. It was lovely to get away and just be a tourist. I deliberately left my diary behind (I still keep a paper one, not electronic) and I didn’t even do any scribbling. Just chilled out. But back to reality now. I’ve made a start on another small screenprint, one of a planned series of favourite artists. This is Suzanne Valadon, a French 19th / 20th century painter. I hope to eventually do a series of small screen prints to take up to the Art Car Boot Fair in London next month. I transferred my drawing to the screen with an HB pencil and used sable brushes to paint on some Speedball Diazo screen drawing fluid. Tomorrow, when it’s dry, I’ll move onto the next stage.

Inking Up

18 Nov

18 brunz drawings

I’m working on a series of drawings for my next exhibition in December. I find it’s a problem deciding what to do for exhibitions. It’s relatively easy if you’re given a theme and plenty of time, or if you’re only putting one or two works into a large group show, but I have to do a minimum of 20 pieces for this one. I’ve been wondering for ages what to do with my sketchbook drawings and I’ve decided to redraw a series of them onto ‘transfer’ prints. My exhibition’s working title is ‘In The City’ because I’m using sketches of people, and things, that I scribble as I’m wandering around the streets. I’ve been doing them in batches, preparing the background ‘transfer’ prints five at a time at Swansea Print Workshop, then pencilling several and then inking them. If you want to know how to do a transfer print, click here. I’ve got about 15 sorted, so just a few more to go, then the framing, then the labelling, then the opening night – maybe it’s easier to go and stack shelves in a supermarket! 😉

Bath And Voyeurs

7 Jul

In between all the photopolymer [solar] plate etching over the last couple of weeks, I managed to proof three blocks I’d cut. They’re the first three of a series based on the concept of the artist as voyeur. I lean out of my second floor studio window and take surreptitious photos of people walking below, then I do drawings from them, transfer the drawings to signwriter’s foamboard and cut and incise the image. I’m very pleased with the results – I like the way each figure is restrained within the black square. There will eventually be nine in the series and I’ll probably do an edition of fifteen prints from each block. The foamboard isn’t as robust as wood or lino so the editions can’t be particularly large.

Tomorrow I’ll be finishing off some framing for the exhibition I’m having in Bath with a small group of artists. We’re calling ourselves and the exhibition Commensalis, so if you’re anywhere near Bath next week, please pop in and see us. The opening is on Monday evening and there will be cake! It’s in a spooky old mortuary chapel that’s been converted to a gallery in the ‘Artisan’ quarter of the city. There will also be performances of poetry, storytelling and Swedish Folk/Jazz throughout the week and fellow artist Melanie Ezra and I are ‘in conversation’ on the Friday evening. After all that, I’m going to have a few days off and wander around with my sketchbook, chilling out.

Enter Rocky The Dragon and The Suicide Method.

5 Oct

Reduction Lino Print: Rocky The Bearded Dragon.


This is a very geeky blog today. I was chatting to some printmakers on LinkedIn earlier about the ‘suicide’ method of block printing [we love talking technique], where you produce a multi-coloured print using the same block, by progressively cutting away each colour. You end up totally destroying the block, so there’s little room for error and there’s no chance of ever doing a reprinted edition. I started this reduction lino block of family pet Rocky, a bearded dragon, by putting a digital photo through the Artistic: Cutout filter on Adobe Photoshop and printing out an image to the size of the block I was using. I also reversed the image and after transferring it, cut out the fragments of white and printed a pale orangey-yellow. Next I removed the orangey-yellow areas and overprinted in a Rhodamine Red mixed with white to give a rich pink. I use Intaglio Printmakers Oil Relief inks. I printed wet on wet to get a slightly ‘fizzy’ surface texture and to encourage some slight colour mixing. Then I removed the pink areaas and printed a rich brown, then grey and finally black. Lots of work! I ended up with an edition of 18 perfect prints, each about 15cms x 10cms.  He’s a real cuteypie.

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