At the Leeds Print Festival I had a number of conversations with people about reduction linocut prints, where I heard of other people’s successes and told of my failures. That’s not entirely true, my reduction cuts have worked out very well, but my process certainly left a lot to be desired. I had awful problems with registration which led to a lot of setting up, which led to fewer final prints. One exactly. A lot of work for very little reward.
I thought I would give it another go, and demonstrate the process to my students along the way, as they are soon to be exploring some printmaking techniques. But what should I do? I figured that since pretty much everything is considered ‘awesome’ by anyone under 20 these days and I must have heard it said at least 4,732 times during the course of the day, that I must do something worthy of the word.
I scrawled out the word a good thirty times in marker pen on layout paper and parcel paper (both have a good ‘spread’ with markers) and selected out a couple that I thought worked well – flowing, legible, but a bit grafitti-ish. Awesome.
Scanning, scaling and cleaning up a bit was done in PhotoShop…
Just a trim around the edge and we are ready to go. Awesome.
A couple of days later I got down to the first printing and mixed up a rich, custard yellow, and set up a registration jig. I always think that the first inking up is a bit exciting (I don’t get out much) as it is the point that the lino block becomes a printing block.
I printed twenty onto a stiff white card, and am very pleased with the quality, considering the large areas of solid colour.
I expect to lose a few along the way, both as set-ups and mis-registration, but aiming for a decent number of quality results.