Tag Archives: etching

B.I.G. And Baked

11 Oct

d BIG

After I filed and degreased my new copper etching plates, I cleaned and prepared a section of the inking up area of Swansea Print Workshop to apply Andrew Baldwin‘s B.I.G. hard ground to the surface of my plates.

c BIG

It’s built up in thin layers until there’s a fine, even amount of ground on the plate. Then it goes into the oven to be baked so it can be used to develop images onto the plate that will eventually be etched. So I baked it ……..

File And Degrease

10 Oct

a file

Take a sheet of warm, shiny copper. File the edges, first with a coarse file, then two successively finer ones to make a gently bevelled edge. Smooth the corners so they are slightly rounded. Flip the sheet over and gently remove the burr around the back edge with the finest file.

b degrease

Then take the copper sheet to the sink and spritz it with soy sauce. Dip a sponge into French chalk and rub it all over the sheet, working the soy and chalk into a paste, making circular patterns in gentle salmon pink until the plate is completely degreased. This afternoon at Swansea Print Workshop.

Heavy Metal

15 Aug

metal

I spent a happy afternoon at Swansea Print Workshop, starting to prepare for a new series of printmaking for my artist residency at The FIRE Lab. I’m planning a mixed bag of techniques based on my drawings en plein air of Victorian culverts. I rummaged around in the drawers of my plans chest to find some metal plates and came up with three copper (one partially used) and an aluminium. So my next stage is to prepare them for use. I’ll use Andrew Baldwin’s Sandpaper Aquatint technique for the copper and then a coffee resist combined with spit-bite for the aluminium.

Here’s a short video of Andrew demonstrating how to do Spit Bite.

And here’s one about the Sandpaper Aquatint

Precision

22 Apr

mari drop 3

Working with Andrew Baldwin at Trefeglwys Print Studio last weekend, I got in some practice doing a double drop print from my aquatint plate. It’s a very specific and precise process. After carefully printing in Vermilion and taping the print to the press bed before peeling it back, we put a heavy weight onto the etching plate to hold it exactly in place and then put a couple of Perspex squares tightly against the plate, along 2 edges, and again placed very heavy weights on them. Then the plate could be very carefully removed, cleaned and inked up in Prussian Blue.

The First Colour

21 Apr

mari drop 1

After inking up my little zinc aquatint plate with a Vermilion oil-based etching ink, I worked with etching expert, Andrew Baldwin, to print the first colour of a two-colour double-drop print. Working with utmost care, I taped the long edge nearest the roller before peeling the damp paper back from the plate. It’s imperative that nothing moves, not even by a millimetre.

Vermilion!

20 Apr

mari vermilion

I started making this aquatint plate back last September the first time I spend a weekend at Trefeglwys Print Studio, but it was the third plate I made that weekend and I didn’t finish it. So during my recent, second, visit to Trefeglwys, I prioritised finishing and proofing it. Here it is being inked up in Vermilion, the first colour in a double drop print process….

The Difference

17 Apr

 

double drop 3

Preparing an etching plate or a wood block or a silk screen is just the first stage of creativity in making an original print. The second creative input comes with the actual printing – the inks, papers and special effects you use. I printed the one above using the ‘double drop’ technique, printing the plate first in Vermilion and secondly in Prussian Blue. Although it’s quite monochromatic, it has a richer, more intense colour than the print below, which was just printed once, in black ink.

single drop .jpg

Metal Marbling

15 Apr

 

marbling

I’ve done marbling onto paper before but this is marbling onto an etching plate. I spent the weekend at a masterclass in etching at Andrew Baldwin’s Trefeglwys Print Studio in Powys. We covered quite a few processes and I’ve wanted to see this one for a while. Andrew marbles a metal plate with his B.I.G. (Baldwin’s Ink Ground) and bakes it to harden it up and then etches it. The results are gorgeous. Here he’s just poured some of the B.I.G., thinned out with lavender oil, onto a solution of vinegar and water and is dragging a stick through it to enhance the marbled effect, just before dipping a prepared aluminium plate onto it.

A Happy Accident

26 Jan

 

poster

Exhibition: “Female Expressions”, Saturday 2nd – Saturday 23rd February. Queen Street Gallery, Neath.

This is an etching of mine called “Ripples” made from an original life drawing, working with a professional model. It’s part of a series of etchings of the nude which I called “Rinascere” which relates to the word Renaissance because I based the etchings on Renaissance drawing techniques. I call it Ripples because of the ripples moving over her body which were an accidental effect of the process. I used a photosensitive etching plate from a drawing on tracing paper. It looked all right but after it had been exposed in the UV light box, I noticed ripples on the plate from the slight undulations on the tracing paper. They were there because I used wet media for the drawing. But I like it, a happy accident. It’s going to be in the “Female Expressions” exhibition.
ripples

 

 

 

Coming To Neath!

25 Jan

cushion crop

Saturday 2nd – Saturday 23rd February. This is a detail of “The Cushion”, one of my etchings that will shortly be in an exhibition called “Female Expression” in the lovely Queen Street Gallery in Neath.

It’s part of a series of etchings of the nude which I called “Rinascere” which relates to the word Renaissance because I based the etchings on Renaissance drawing techniques.

According to the exhibition’s curator, Jocelyn Prosser, this is…
An exhibition celebrating the female form. Each artist will give a unique and deeply personal expression of the female condition. Although diverse there is a bond in this exhibition that connects. It reveals the strength and fragility within the female psyche.”

 

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