Sunday, September 23, 2012

Linoreduction, last 2 passes

cutting the last of the dark greens away
finally, down to cutting away the last of the dark greens, the plate is getting "sloppier" and harder to handle, think about that when positioning it in the matrix for printing, that it is in the right place.....
this time I have "lined" the matrix with brown tape, why? because, with a bigger piece of paper, it does make it easier as the paper slides better into position on the tape, than it does on the bare cardboard.
favorite at the moment colour, and Becky giving the basket a good whipping!
inking up the last colour, the one that makes it all come together (hopefully ;o) right now, I am in love with dark aubergine... it gives a lovely finish, sometimes black is not the thing, it depends of course on the print very much...... I am fickle when it comes to colours.... favorites slide in and out of use.
first finished print off the press
and here it is, the first finished print off the press, not gonna rock the world, but I am happy, it has come out very nice, and I like it.
Remember when you ink up so many colours, that if it goes quite fast with the colours, and they don't have time to dry totally in between, you can get previous colours transferring back onto the plate, making the last colour not so dense as you might wish, now, I like this, I like the peeping through of colours, but not everybody does, the answer to this is of course to clean the plate in between printings, or... wait for the ink to dry more before applying the last inking.
I can see that the plate lends itself to cutting out the hens to make something with...... I always have a look at the plate, even if the plate as a whole does not work anymore, parts of it might, bits of it can be great in a collagraph or monoprint.....
I am doodling around with materials other than cardboard for the matrix, it does "extend" a little bit in the printing process, and the hole becomes a bit bigger, but I still prefer it, as rarely are any of my plates the same size, which makes the use of wood, or plastic, a lot more expensive.... there is always a trade off between easy and difficult in printmaking..... part of what makes it so fun!
Happy printing!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Linocut reduction, algarrobo and hens, part 2

blue and gray goes on
day 2 of my linoreduction, which is starting to be called "somebody has to be the boss" was a real knuckle down day and get on with it...... first thing in the morning, I rolled up the bright blue and the soft gray in one go....following on yesterdays several colours experiment, that I quite liked... of course, I should have realised that you would see them through, duhhh.... sometimes printmaking makes me laugh, you think you've got it.....hmmmm... sounds awfully like golf doesn't it?
third run through the press
so in a bit of a tizzy about seeing the colours, what do to but revert to good old inking up the whole plate.... well, not so much a tizzy, as a wanting to take advantage of the light green in many places.
As a good little artist, I should of course have coloursampled etc.... to see how things go together, if they cover right, if they blend good, and all that... but I am a bad little artist in that respect, I just go for it and correct as I am printing, I kind of like that.... it teaches me something new every time, every print, every colour , all stored away in that mental log book of mine, (see part one for that ramble) for future use.....
the RED

inking up the plate in red, felt like I saw it for the first time
 most of the time, when doing reduction printing, somewhere in the middle, I loose heart, it does not look like anything, it does not feel right, I doubt my ability to make the right colours come true, and all that stuff..... but weirdly, and thankfully, rolling up the plate in red, it kind of revealed itself, showed itself to me for the first time, and I thought DARN..... if I had inked it up once in red before I cut away the light green leaves, I could have pulled some prints only in red, as it had a very finished look, and would have felt good at that stage as a free standing print.... but TOO LATE! the leaf stems on the cut away light green leaves just looked silly..... arrgh
mid green goes on
and yes, here it is...mid way doubts hmmmm, naw.... don't know..... really?
My only advice at this stage is: STOP THINKING, and just do........ there is no other way past this point..... I call it my "believe in miracles stage"  in a reduction print.....
oh, and the good registrations were going faster than Fosters at an Aussie barbie..... not so fun! Think 4 colours in a long day might have been to blame!
Tomorrow is a new day, and tomorrow is finish day......:o)) See you then!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Linocut reduction printing, ink management

inking up the first 3 colours in one go
Starting on my new lino reduction, I decided to try something new (for me) and ink up the 3 first colours all in one go, and this made me think of ink management! Ink management I can hear you say, what the heck would that be a in a creative world?? Well... I use it a lot, deciding in a very controled way how much ink to apply to the plate as it goes through the stages, you are in charge of the roller, remember, it is not in charge of you, you decide how much ink to roll up, you decide on where to put it, and you also decide on what pressure to put the plate through the press..... all of these things play a part in the finished print.
A lot of times, newcomers to the world of lino reductions, look at the roller like there is a little gremlin living in it, that applied too much ink (messy) or too little ink (nothing) or uneven, stripy, blotchy, yes, there are many variations of applying ink ;o)) Sorry, no gremlin, just you...... so I always talk about the internal logbook you need to keep as a printmaker, the log book you refer to, when you wonder if there is enough ink on the roller, the sound the roller makes when it is perfect, the look of the ink on the roll up board, ( it looks like finest sandpaper) and you store that way.... so that next time, you can open your log and look back and use that knowledge, that experience...... it takes a while to get used to constantly be thinking whilst you work, there are so many things to remember,
not least the darn b-ggery registration.....  but try... really try... make written notes, although I find that  irritating and that it breaks my rhytm, but this is about you... about you finding a way, a method of storing what you learn as you print, a conscious, thought out storing file cabinet for all the stuff that is needed when it comes to printing a 6 - 7 - 7 or maybe even 10 colour lino reduction. I know, it is easy for me to say, I do this every day (almost), and repetition of course, makes you better at it, but still, a log book...... give it a try!
the lino plate inked
 I decided to not be so fiddly about the colours but seeing a little bit what would happen if I inked it up quite loose with overlaps etc.....
the print after the first run through the press
 This is the first print, the marker, that I draw with on the lino, tends to lift off on the first pieces of paper, but gets covered eventually as the ink application continues.

tomorrow....... great strides with 4 colours in one day!! See you......