Tag Archives: printmaking

Taking It Further….

2 Apr

I’ve been thinking about how artwork develops from my original sketches.

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I always carry a sketchbook and have dozens and dozens stuffed into cupboards with thousands of sketches done over the years and most stay locked away. But occasionally I find something that inspires me to use some of them as the basis for new work, usually some form of printmaking. About 3 years ago I was fortunate enough to visit Pakistan for a month as a resident artist at the Zaira Zaka Print Studio near Rawalpindi. On a crazy car journey from Rawalpindi to Lahore on my birthday in the worst storm I’ve ever seen, I sat in the back of the car and scribbled with my Daler Rowney pastels into a Khadi handmade paper sketchbook, capturing speedy impressions of the ever-changing atmospheric landscape as we drove. When I came back I edited the drawings into a video (below).

 

I also took the sketches into the studio at Swansea Print Workshop and started to work on small full-colour monotypes; if you want to find out more about my technique, please click here.

 

 

I have put my series of drawings 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.

St Elvis

Stamping!

19 Mar

 

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I’ve been trying out some experiments with commercial stamps. They can be very cheap, especially the ones made for kids, and they can be used to build up some interesting images, combined with other techniques.

 

I used a water-based printing ink from Seawhite’s of Brighton, rolled onto a perspex plate, some recycled sari paper for the chine collé, a couple of torn pieces of computer printer paper for the stencils and a commercial stamp of a car from a child’s cheap stamping kit.

 

Last week was the opening of Swansea’s International Women’s Day exhibition at Cinema & Co. It was fantastic, loads of people there and lots of arty and fun things happening. Cinema & Co is putting on a terrific programme of films through the month because it’s also Women’s History Month. Please check out the programme here …..

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I have put my series of drawings 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.

St Elvis

At The Bus Stop

7 Mar

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I had a bit of a scribble when I was waiting for the bus yesterday. I had 10 minutes or so to kill and that’s enough for a bit of street drawing. A while back I finished all the pages in my leather steampunk sketchbook so I replaced the pages with scraps of paper left over from other art projects. The paper here is a piece of Somerset that I’d initially squeegeed with a browny grey acrylic screenprinting medium the screenprinted in with some of my sketchbook drawings and photographs. I use these papers for mixed media work but this bit was left over and too good to throw away. I drew the street scene with a black Faber Castell Pitt drawing pen, size F.

The Sinister Skull

27 Jan

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I thought I had blogged all the monotypes I made from my Mari Lwyd drawings but I overlooked this one. It was the last that I did that day and maybe because I was tired and hungry, it’s probably the most sinister of the series. Mari Lwyd is actually quite a fun tradition, with lots of banter, drinking and skittishness although people unfamiliar with it are often spooked by the horse’s skull!

 

 

I am putting my series of drawings of ancient Welsh monuments on Artfinder.  If you want to buy one, you can see them by clicking on the image below or the Artfinder link at the top right of this page.

St Elvis

Annwyl Kathe

22 Jan

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Once upon a time, the printmakers of Wingtip Press in Boise, Idaho, USA were cleaning out their flat files and found dozens of little scraps of expensive printmaking papers jamming up the drawers. Realising they probably weren’t alone with the dilemma of what to do with all those too-precious-to-throw-out leftover paper scraps, they issued an invitation to fellow printmakers around the globe to participate in a print exchange to use all those lovely bits of paper.

Artists submit an edition of 15 miniature prints and received a dozen prints in return. One of the edition is included in a silent auction to raise funds for the Hunger Relief Task Force in the State another edition joins an international touring exhibition. Now in its seventh year, the exchange includes printmakers from Australia to Arizona, Canada to Colorado, Nevada to Norway to New Zealand, Korea to Kansas, Wales to Washington, and places in between! The box of over a hundred little prints recently crossed the Atlantic from Reno to The Rhondda Valley and has just finished its exhibition at Swansea Print Workshop.

I’ve just completed my little edition of 15 for Leftovers VII. It’s inspired by my admiration for German Expressionist artist Käthe Kollwitz and I’ve done some little prints from a rubber stamp I had made from a screenprint I had done of her. The print is on a Japanese Shiohara paper which sews nicely so I have stitched them to J Green & Sons vintage paper (supplied by the Vintage Paper Co) with a strip of ripped hand-made paper, embedded with petals, in between. Finally I wrote in Welsh pencil on each “Annwyl Käthe, ‘dw i’n caru di….” (Dear Käthe, I love you….)

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For more information about entering your prints for Leftovers VII, please contact Wingtip Press. The deadline has been extended to March 15th and the opportunity for two artists to do a residency at Wingtip has been added.

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I am putting my series of drawings of ancient Welsh monuments on Artfinder.  If you want to buy one, you can see them by clicking on the image below or the Artfinder link at the top right of this page.

St Elvis

The Last Mari For Now

20 Jan

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Here’s the last of the monotypes I made recently at Swansea Print Workshop based on my drawings of the Mari Lwyd. I used a vintage paper made by J Green and Sons supplied by the rather wonderful company The Vintage Paper Co in The Orkneys. The ink is Caligo Easy Wash Relief and the chine collé is hand made recycled sari paper stuck on with YES Paste. I used cotton buds (Q Tips), wooden barbecue skewers, scrim (tarlatan) and cotton rags for the mark making.

 

 

I am putting my series of drawings of ancient Welsh monuments on Artfinder.  If you want to buy one, you can see them by clicking on the image below or the Artfinder link at the top right of this page.

St Elvis

The Right Combo

17 Jan
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Mari Lwyd (with chine colle)

Spent the day at Swansea Print Workshop making more monotypes based on the drawings I did while I followed around two local Mari Lwyd in December and January. I’m experimenting to find the right combination of ink, paper and glue (for the chine collé). I originally used Bockingford, Somerset then switched to a vintage paper by J Green & Sons (supplied by the Vintage Paper Co in Orkney). Today I just used the J Green paper which doesn’t need soaking, just a little spritz of clean water

Last time I tried out Intaglio Printmaker’s Litho / Relief oil-based ink with varying amounts of Extender but found it too tacky, it was quite hard to work the drawing onto the plate and it didn’t want to release the chine collé when it went through the press, so today I gave Caligo Easy Wash Relief ink a go. It worked much better although it was too loose to hold fine detail through the printing press.

Previously, I tried Pritt for the chine collé but today I used ‘YES’ paste which was much easier to apply and stuck the light tissues to the main print perfectly. Very impressed with it. I’ve changed everything from my starting point, it can take some time and experimentation to get the right combo.

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The ‘ghost’ print

After taking the first print with chine collé, I put another sheet of the dampened J Green paper onto the plate and took a ‘ghost’ print which I will work into with artist-quality oil pastels or maybe collage.

 

 

I am putting my series of drawings of ancient Welsh monuments on Artfinder.  If you want to buy one, you can see them by clicking on the image below or the Artfinder link at the top right of this page.

St Elvis

Printing The Plate

16 Jan

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After preparing the plate with my image of a Mari Lwyd, I printed it on one of the smaller etching presses at Swansea Print Workshop. For this one I used a vintage paper, by J Green & Sons that was manufactured between 1969 and 1974, sourced from the Vintage Paper Co. I didn’t have to soak it, just a spritz with clean water from a squirty bottle. That saved some time and hassle. It gave a good dense black and plenty of definition.

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I put another piece of spritzed paper through to take a ghost print which didn’t, of course, have any chine collé. I’m thinking of working into this with top quality oil pastels.

 

 

I am putting my series of drawings of ancient Welsh monuments on Artfinder.  If you want to buy one, you can see them by clicking on the image below or the Artfinder link at the top right of this page.

St Elvis

Prepping The Plate

15 Jan

mono-9-plate

Working from my recent drawings of the Mari Lwyd, I developed some of them into monotypes. I used a piece of perspex (acrylic sheet) and litho / relief ink mixed with Extender (by Intaglio Printmaker). This was rollered very thinly onto the perspex and I drew into it with cotton buds, wooden skewers, scrim and rags.

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I wanted to include some colour to represent the ribbons and flowers that decorate the Mari skull so I ripped pieces of handmade papers made from recycled saris and placed them face down onto the prepared plate. Before putting them down I covered the upper side with glue – I used Pritt – as this is will stick it to the paper I will print the plate on.

More to come ……

 

 

I am putting my series of drawings of ancient Welsh monuments on Artfinder.  If you want to buy one, you can see them by clicking on the image below or the Artfinder link at the top right of this page.

St Elvis

Getting Ready

14 Jan

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I’ve been popping down to Swansea Print Workshop since Xmas, experimenting with reductive monotypes based on my recent sketchbook drawings of the Mari Lwyd. As with most things, preparation is everything and here are some of my photos of getting ready. I’m trying out different papers to print on – Somerset, Bockingford, BFK Rives and a lovely vintage paper from the Vintage Paper Co by J Green & Sons that was manufactured between 1969 and 1974. All these papers are top quality and 100% cotton.

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As I want to include some colour in the monotypes, to reflect the colourful decorations on the horse’s skull, I have a collection of hand made papers to be used for chine collé, some Khadi handmade papers and some lightweight fibrous papers made from recycled saris.

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I’m using two pieces of perspex (acrylic sheet), one for inking and one for the actual monotype and I’ve set these out onto a newspaper-covered table with my palette knife, roller (brayer), oil-based litho / relief ink (by Intaglio Printmakers) and a selection of materials to use to make marks onto the plate – cotton buds (Q tips), scrim (tarlatan), rags and wooden kebab skewers.

Ready to go!

 

 

 

I am putting my series of drawings of ancient Welsh monuments on Artfinder.  If you want to buy one, you can see them by clicking on the image below or the Artfinder link at the top right of this page.

St Elvis

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