Tag Archives: block printing

We’re Not Proud

9 Nov

From November 9th at Cinema & Co, Swansea, the new BogArt exhibition by me and Patti McJones.

caco 1

Art is mostly exhibited in galleries and museums that can be quite intimidating to many people, so Patti and I took up an offer by Anna, the owner of Cinema & Co, to use her substantial toilets to exhibit some of our work. We call it BogArt – art in the bogs – and it’s very democratic because people don’t have to go to a gallery but everyone has to go to the toilet. We’re not too proud to show our work here.

The work will be up for a few months but please look at Cinema and Co’s website for opening times. And here’s a short film of us talking about it …

 

 

 

 

Shellac And Meths

6 Nov

cinema and co 2

 

So the new woodblock I’m working on has been cut and is now out in the shed drying after a coat of shellac and methylated spirits in a 50:50 ratio. It needs two more coats to seal it properly so I hope to be able to take a first proof from it sometime on Friday.

Pronto

5 Nov

cinema and co 1

I’m in printmaking mode at the moment, with a woodcut and a silkscreen in development. This woodcut will hopefully be ready for an event at Swansea’s Cinema & Co this Saturday, November 9th. It’s a free event with a screening of the marvellous film “Set Fire To The Stars“, poetry, music and new art throughout the building……

I’d better finish carving this block pronto ………

Heads On Show

4 Nov

Pakistan suite small

I did this suite of portrait heads based on drawings from my first visit to Pakistan a few years back. I used polyurethane foamboard, the sort used by signwriters, instead of lino or wood. The block below is the one on the left in the middle row above, inked up and printed.

flotex head

They’ve never been exhibited as a group before but they will be very soon, in Swansea’s Cinema & Co from this coming Saturday, November 9th.

The Block Block

11 Aug

big i

Here are the vinyl blocks I printed yesterday, inked up and ready to go. They’re about 7 x 9 inches each. They’ve been printed singly but I like the look of them grouped together in a block and might print a couple of sheets like this. But that’ll have to wait until after I’ve finished mounting and framing all the work for my upcoming exhibition at Oriel Ceri Richards from August the 21st.

I drew, cut and printed these at Swansea Print Workshop on an antique Victorian Columbian printing press.

 

FINISHED!

10 Aug
big e

My vinyl block inked with black

Up and out early today to finish the second colour on the last four vinyl blocks. Done and dusted. I’ve made a series of 8 small and 4 not so small block prints for the exhibition I’m a part of in a couple of weeks. The imagery has been inspired by a visit I made to Berlin a couple of winters ago and in particular seeing the Berlin Holocaust Memorial under a deep white muffled blanket of snow. I’ve used softcut vinyl and Intaglio Printmaker’s relief / litho ink mixed 50:50 with extender onto Japanese Hosho paper. I printed them on the antique Columbian press at Swansea Print Workshop, a beautiful example of Victorian machinery, still in use.

big f

The vinyl is very good, especially with the smaller pieces, but rather floppy which made placing the larger pieces a bit difficult. In future, I’ll glue larger blocks onto some thin plywood. I used the shiny side of the Hosho paper and found that mixing the rather stiff ink with extender gave the best results I’ve had so far with blockprints.

Next? Mounting and framing.

 

Ready For The First Cut

10 Apr

ready cuts

I’ve been preparing a stack of vinyl blocks ready for cutting. I’ve drawn on them, firstly in graphite then in Faber Castell Pitt drawing pens. Each block will be printed in 4 stages; the first stage is to start cutting away the areas that will be white on the final print. Then I’ll cut the areas that will be a light grey, then the areas to be dark grey and the final cut will leave the areas to be printed in black. This is called the ‘suicide’ or reduction method as it progressively cuts away at the block until there is very little of it left. There’s no margin for error. It’ll be a lot of work to print an edition from all 12 blocks. It’s going to take a while.

Printmakers = geeks. It’s true 😀

Tea And Welshcakes

29 Mar

Hunza Elder Woman copy

I’m taking part in a ‘Museum Experience’ at Swansea Museum, beginning on March 31st and carrying through to May 17th. It’s called ‘PROCESS’, because it focuses on the processes that artists use to create their work. More than an exhibition of work on walls, ‘PROCESS’ also showcases sketchbooks, tools and materials to foster an understanding of how artists create art.

There’s an opening at Swansea Museum with tea and Welshcakes in a family-friendly event on Easter Sunday afternoon (April the 5th) from 2-4pm to launch it. You’re very welcome to join us in this fabulous Victorian museum, a proper cabinet of curiosities and there’s an art-trail for children to do as well.

The show, with other members of the 15 Hundred Lives collective, covers painting, drawing, printmaking, collage and electronic media, and there’s also a programme of interactive arts events throughout March, April and May.

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My part of the show features some of my block (relief) prints – lino, wood and foamboard. These portrait heads are based on photos and drawings I did during a visit to Pakistan and they’re incised into offcuts of Foamex signwriters board. It’s a fairly hard PVC foamboard that’s great for cutting very fine lines, much finer than you can get with lino or softwood. It’s the first time I’ve exhibited these portraits as a group. If you’re in the area, it would be lovely to see you.

Process, Process, Process

5 Mar

Artists make art, well most of us do anyway. And making art is all about process, starting with a germ of an idea and ending up with something on a wall, or a plinth. And that’s what I’ve been doing for a few days now, as well as fending of a nasty lurgi. I’m planning a group of small lino-block portraits. I’m starting from photographs but I want to work quickly so I’m Photoshopping them to speed up the process. Here’s one, starting with the original photo, then turning it to black and white, reversing it (so it transfers to the block properly), then finding a Filter that will minimise the tonal values. That’s as far as I’ve got today but I’ve been working on 25 of them. Eventually they’ll be printed as 4″ squares and mounted in a 5×5 square format.

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Tomorrow I’ll be transferring them to blocks for cutting.

 

Bristol And The Beeb

29 Jun

28 mud dock

Husb and I went over the border to Bristol today for a delightful day at Spike Print Studio, where three exceptional printmakers did a series of demonstrations and talks about their practice. We walked along the riverbank up to the Mud Dock Deli for lunch and sat upstairs on the mezzanine while I drew the punters queueing at the counter. The foreshortening was severe and they were all sorts of odd shapes.

I made visual notes during the demos by Aoife Layton (mezzotint and digital drawing), Fiona Kelly (contemporary block print and lino etching) and Ros Ford (from drawing to photopolymer intaglio). I also scribbled some of the faces there. Now I’m home, chilling to BBC 3’s excellent Glastonbury coverage.

 

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