Tag Archives: reduction monotype


23 Sep

full colour

Spent a happy few hours at Swansea Print Workshop this evening, making another small monotype based on one of my pastel landscape drawings from the residency I did in Pakistan earlier this year. I did a series of 49 small drawings very quickly, so they are very impressionistic. This is based on one of the drawings done during a thunderstorm. This monotype technique is called stacking or reduction monotype and it produces a full-colour unique print. It’s where painting and printmaking cross over.

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Working from a black and white copy of the original drawing underneath a perspex plate, it’s first inked up in process yellow and drawn into with all sorts of equipment; cotton buds, scrim, cocktail sticks, kebab skewers, stiff paint brushes; then a print is taken. This is repeated with the plate inked up in process red and placed on top of the yellow print and put through the press. Finally, the same is done with the perspex inked up with process blue and the last print taken – the three are stacked on top of each other. You can read more about it in the technical section of my website here.

I’m moderately pleased with this one, but I need to practice my brush techniques because the colours are a bit too bright for my liking. I intend to carry on doing these for quite a while, so I’m hoping I’ll improve.

More prelims

16 Oct


I’m working on a preliminary series of 4 reduction monotypes. These are not final pieces; they’re stages on the way of deciding what works and what adaptations are needed before I do the final pieces. Unusually, I’m working from photographs as my starting point. I’ve taken a photo of one of the graffiti-covered industrial ruins in the Lower Swansea Valley and I’ve digitally merged it with a drawing I did from a photo I took a couple of years ago. I’m working on incorporating my own graffiti into the pieces but I’m a long way from perfecting it yet. Graffiti lettering is much harder than I was anticipating and it’s also difficult to render in the medium, reduction monotype, where I’m working with negative space using a cotton bud to remove the ink on the plate. But I’m getting there.

I used black litho/relief ink mixed 60:40 with thick plate oil ontop a perspex 12″ square plate printed onto a creamy T.H. Saunders hand made paper, around 140gsm, using cotton buds (Q Tips), scrim, cotton rags, cocktail sticks (toothpicks) and wooden kebab skewers to do the mark-making.

Monotypes Across The Pond

22 Sep

I’ve been working with an international collaborative group of artist/printmakers to develop a portrfolio of full-colour monotypes for the Rocky Mountain Printmaking Symposium Biennale in Utah, USA next month. It’s been a good experience to work with such talented artists from Swansea Printmaking Workshop and I’m really excited that these prints are going across the world. There are also USA artists making work for this portfolio, which is being organised by Wingtip Press in Boise, Idaho. If you want to know more about the monotype technique we’ve been using, click here.

Just A Quickie

12 Feb


The lurgi is still with me but I managed a couple of hours pottering today, showing an old friend some of my work in exhibitions, then I went home and crashed. It’s very frustrating because I can’t get the energy to do any artwork when I’m in this state. So here’s one I did earlier :).

I was doing some direct line monotypes in the studio a while back and as I started to clean the ink off the perspex, I liked the smudgy marks, so I quickly scribbled a figure in the corner with a cotton bud (Q tip) and took the print (a reduction monotype) onto some acid-free tissue I had hanging about, very gently smoothing it with my hand. I’d always thought that you needed a press to take a reductive print, but it depends on the thickness of the paper. Using really thin tissue worked quite well, so I’ll do some more experimenting with it – when I finally get rid of this dreaded lurgi!!!!!

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