Printmaking

Printmaking #2

Last week I did my first prints from a new lino block and promised to publish the results here when they had dried. So here they are. And before anybody starts harping on about the state of the typography, I did say right at the start I was being a bit ambitious!

print1

I always find that I over ink on the first one and this is no exception: the vertical cuts on the bottom left of the press are largely full of ink and don’t show. I am satisfied that I am using the right amount of pressure though. Another inking and a second print:

print2
A better print this time. I was very encouraged by this quick improvement and prepared another to see if I was really doing this right or just got lucky:

print3

Over inked again. So I’m in the right area – vairiations in inking and pressure can be expected on a hand press like this, but I am still impressed with the general consistency of the results so far.

The vertical cuts on the bottom left of the press are obviously not very deep and have filled up with ink. I decided to print another one without re-inking the block. I was hoping that another impression might ‘lift’ the ink and clean up the block a bit:

print4

I like the results of this under-inked print – it looks ‘printed’ if you know what I mean? I know that sounds daft, but sometimes you need to labour the process a bit to gain an effect.

Another inking then and back into the press:

print5

Not bad! I have manged to retain the detail that had filled in before, and allowed a few patchy areas (top left and centre) that give it that ‘printerly’ feel, and gained a few more cutting ridges in the white areas. I think this is a result. I will now start cutting lino for a series of graphic prints … watch this space!

Earlier this week I did a few more prints with the kids. As we were finishing off, I picked up a pigeon feather that had blown into the garage some days before, and, using the the last of the rolled out ink, I inked it up and bunged it in the press under a few j-cloths to spead the pressure a bit more. This is a high res image – click on it for the full effect!

feather

I’m really excited about the possibilities here. I know I have access to more sophisticated equipment at college, along with the technical support and ready advice from my colleagues and students, but this is something else.

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