Oh yes! An evening in the garage continuously listening to Them Crooked Vultures (b*****y brilliant!) and doing plenty of printing. With mixed results. I started with the wood block of course:
I was quite sad but equally excited putting ink on the clean block. It’ll never be clean again… I started with raw Prussian Blue (I first used this on an etching last year and have developed an unhealthy fixation with it) and went on to add white and black, plus more blue as the evening progressed. I will buy some other colours soon, honest!
I only pulled five prints of this and was not terribly happy with the results. I’ve photographed the same word on each print to show variations in quality.
The first was under inked. I’d rather under- than over -ink at first and this was a predictable result for the first pull.
Second print was more solid with a few patchy areas indicating that I was getting the inking to a better level, if not consistency.
Third print was the best of the three, but not without it’s weak spots (don’t worry, you’ll see a full print later on in this post!)
Fourth print was patchy again, so I added some black to the inkplate
The last print was patchy again, but I was frustrated by my working conditions! (more of which to follow!)
This is a full image of print three. The colour is a bit variable because I photographed it rather than scanning as the ink is still a bit tacky. So what was I frustrated by?
Muck, really. The spot above is called a ‘hickey’ and is caused by a bit of muck getting onto the roller durink inking up. This creates the spot and pushes the paper away to create the halo effect. I am quite tolerant of this usually, because I accept that I am working in my garage and it not the purpose built studio I would like it to be! (Any donations welcome!) But in this case, I am frustrated because this hickey looks like a full stop.
This print is quite interesting as it looks a bit like a 1950’s horror movie title! The little white ‘nicks are where the top layer of the ply has split whilst cutting, which has not been visible on the block until now.
There are patchy areas in all of the prints which I think might be to do with the water-based inks on the wood, but some enquiries at college today also pointed towards my press blankets (thanks Mr. Setchell!) which are a just couple of sheets of cheap felt. These have been fine for most of what I’ve printed so far, but I think I shall have to invest in some ‘proper’ press blankets before I try again.
The little patch around the ‘AB’ of ‘abroad’ was puzzling – this is about 10mm diameter and on inspection of the block I found that the ink had not transferred in that patch but I couldn’t make out any variation in the surface.
I have left all of the ink on the block. Not cleaned it to be more precise. I mentioned before that I thought there may be an issue with the ink and the wood because it took/absorbed a lot of ink (much more than I would have expected) for these few pulls. I’m hoping that the ink will form a partial seal to the wood and with proper press blankets, I may be able to get some good quality prints…
I do like the under-inked effect though, especially where the ink gathers at the edge of the image to form lines.
The evening didn’t finish there though.
I pulled some prints of a block of wood…
and some leather, both of which will be scanned at a high-resolution and posted on flickr for use as textures in a week or so.
I also continued with my experimental postcard overprinting that I started last time. I intend to keep adding a new layer each time I print. I don’t know what these will end up like, but I’m enjoying seeing what happens…
In the spirit of the comments generated by the last type/print entry, what follows next could be described as printyporn, pornoprint, print-porno etc, but I’d like to get mine in first – ‘hand-relief printing!’ (ok then, that’s set the tone for the next batch of comments – but that’s ok – there are no complaint forms here!!) There is very little commentary to the images. Please enjoy them for what they are, but do clean up after yourselves…
Mmm, look at the serif on that!
This is what my secret santa got me this year; a little Mini block! By best mate Mick used to own and restore Minis in his younger days. I printed off a few of these with different bits of type (most are a bit messy like this, but I kind of like it!) and intend to send him a little pack for his birthday later this year! Don’t tell him.
Ah well. I’d better go back and see if the kids still recognise me…
I will have to revisit the woodblock though. I need to get a good print. I need to get a good print.