Dunnock linocut

Following on from my Siskin linoprint, I have finally finished carving the first block of a Dunnock linocut.

Its about a5 size. And now I’ve carved it, I need to decide what to do next. I hear you cry, but didn’t you have a plan!? Well yes I had in mind what I thought I wanted this print to look like. But now I have printed the proof of this first layer, the black background again is very striking.

Proof on tissue paper , printed by hand

In my idea I would carve it out of the surrounding lino. But leaving it stark black and white with the inky blackness behind has an appeal. I found this with the siskin print, so left the block so I could print it like that as another option.

Any who, decisions to be made and my troble is I usually quite like all the options so find it hard to choose. I should do some sampling to help me decide, but that usually leads to me being distracted and not finishing original idea. Arrrgggh . These are all nice problems to have though, and this is just a nice place to write then down and have a think.

Putting things into the public domain makes me finish things more so than if I don’t share them , so thanks person reading this 😂

Block before being inked

Siskin Linoprint, hopefully one of many.

I have started a new ongoing project to print my favourite birds from the UK ( possibly elsewhere) in detailed linocuts.

4 layers of lino to build the colours.

I wanted to challenge myself with this project, so it is technically challenging as I am also printing them as multi block prints. Which means tight registration from separate blocks of lino carved to make the other layers of colour. In this case, yellow, green and the background for example. Something which I have not done before to such a high level of accuracy, and it took a long time to get right on this first print!

As I said though it is a learning experience for me as well as the chance to make some hopefully beautiful prints. They are for sale on my Etsy site, PrintPaintDrawMake and I will be donating a portion of the price of the sale of these to my local wildlife animal charity.

I have started my next lino cut in this series and was thinking that due to lock down I would get loads done, but actually I have not made much progress on it. I have noticed that my work is in fits and starts, sometimes due to time commitments elsewhere, as I have been working from home during this time. But projects like this can’t be pushed, I find I need to be in the right frame of mind, otherwise risk ruining it.

Thanks for reading, stay safe.

Dunnock to be my next subject.

‘Kitchen lithography’. Its so easy !

You know those things that have been on your to do list since time began? 

Well one of mine was to have a go at kitchen litho, since I found an article on it at university. That was some time ago now! 

I finally had a go at it , and its amazing ! I will post a more in depth blog on it once i have practised it a bit more myself, but you can find information on it if you search kitchen lithography or something similar. It, compared to lithography in a studio , is a much faster , nontoxic way of getting drawing-like prints at home. Your print run would be small but it’s so exciting to be able to do it at home. 

Here are some pics of my first go…

The plate made of aluminium foil taped tightly and carefully to a piece of perspex, next to my first print from it.

Three prints, it started getting ink on the rest of the plate after this not sure why, more experimenting needed.

 I drew onto the tin foil with soft graphite, 8b and above. This was a quick sketch of a Dandelion. 

Any questions please ask

New mini printing press! 

It was my birthday recently, and I happened to see this little desktop printing press that I had had my eye on for a while, was on sale, so birthday pressie for myself I bought it .

I have had a few goes on it trying different plates, it has its own way of printing which I need to master, but it’s looking promising for much fun in the future 😁

Fixing it to my desk …

A bit of rumaging around in the garage for some bits that would make suitable brackets and bolts to attach it.

One of the first prints with it, from a collograph plate , a pretty good impression ! 

Drawing trees again 

So its the end of winter , waiting for spring in our new home and garden that has an apple tree down the bottom , which has probably been there as long as the house, on a day when the weather looked chanagable I went out with some big sheets of paper and had a go at drawing the Apple tree, trying to draw loosely , but building up the texture and areas of detail , did a couple of drawings this way happy with them but not sure any of them are perfect. 

I will just have to keep drawing trees ! 

It would be great to hear what you think of them ! 

Thanks for looking

Oops! February, March and Aprils Sketch a Day, best bits…

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This was a bit of a cheat , i had missed loads of days so i divided up my page and did loads of little sketches of british birds, cus I love em!

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It was Shakespeares 400th anniversary of his birth the other day , and i was watching the RSC programme on the bbc , they had extracts from shakespear , opera and dance which these very loose sketches was my attempt to capture  a dance between othello and desdemona, big heavy marks for othello and more fluid delicate marks for desdemona.

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Birds of Paradise sketches..

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DSCF5406I watched `Attenborough’s Paradise Birds` on the iplayer back in february, which inspired me to watch it back and try and sketch the amazing birds he showed on it , here are some of them. The crazy shapes that these birds have evolved into and the colours are just amazing , so colourful compared to British wildlife, not sure where these sketches will go..

I was thinking maybe a large scale painting focusing on the colours and movement of the birds…

For great clips of birds of paradise there is a great you tube channel here.

Thanks for looking, any comments or ideas would be great !

Januarys Best Bits…

Here we are again! Another month down on my sketch a day project.  January was a mixed bag of drawings. I started the month really energised, but that slowly trickled away till my sketch a day was happening in fits and starts, but I was happy with the earlier sketches from the month. which these are some .

Febuary so far has been very bird themed, I was inspired by a programme on the birds of paradise! So that will be next months 😉

Thanks for looking