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Monday, 27 January 2014

Printing




Like most things, linocut printing is harder than it looks. This is the latest attempt, and there have been a few in between....yes, it's really, really hard! First, there's the carving out of the lino: I started off by trying to draw a picture into the lino using fine lines, but of course that isn't how it works. You need to find a design that works in relief. The carving is tricky, making small marks (flower stalks) was not an easy thing for me to do, sometimes the lino crumbles a bit so you don't get a clean line and then you need to start working on it again. 



Then there is the actual printing, and getting the ink just right, evenly applied, with no splodges...well I didn't crack that one either....in fact, I seem to have ink spots just about everywhere, hands, hair, jeans...



But, I really LOVED doing this. It is a very methodical thing to do, requires total absorption, and is the perfect activity for a rain-lashed weekend like the one that has just passed. I can't wait to have another try and I am also now scouring the area for details of a course that I might be able to do. 
I have two print heroes/heroines. The first is Eric Ravilious. He was a genius, tragically killed in the Second World War at the age of 39. My Dad introduced me to his work years ago, and I have lots of books about him, my latest is this one on his woodcuts.



  
These are wood engravings, so of course they are very fine and precise. But just look at this:



My print heroine is Angie Lewin, who is a contemporary artist. 



This is from her book Plants and Places, which is beautiful, and highly recommended.

Anyway, I am definitely going to carry on going, conquer the splodges and learn to control those lino cutters. 

14 comments:

  1. I did lino printing for my art A Level (many moons ago!) and loved it but haven't tried it since.
    I too am smitten by the talent of Ravilious and Angie Lewin. M x

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    1. I dimly remember doing it for O level art, but I did screen printing for A level, not lino cutting. I wish I had now!

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  2. I love your design and I think its not an easy craft to learn. I can remember doing leaf cuts and having difficulty with the paint too. if you are ever down this way the Towner Gallery has a beautiful, large collection of Ravilious' work. Its in Eastbourne the town along from us where he was at school and art college. I went to the same art college many years later. Karen xx

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    1. Hi Karen, I''ve read about the Towner Gallery and would absolutely love to visit. I have been reading about his life recently, and how he went to college at Eastbourne and later taught there too. How lovely that you went to the same college! I like Edward Bawden, too, Ravilious's friend and fellow artist, and actually there is a gallery a bit nearer to us, in Bedford, that I fully intend to visit as soon as I can find time, which has lots of Bawden's work.

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  3. ah yes - two designers of great merit indeed. I bought a few Ravilious saucers at a car boot last year...no cups though...one day I will find a mug (I live in hope). Love your lino prints - did you use to make these at school too? I think I just about managed a cat!
    All the best for 2014
    Best wishes
    Jenny

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    1. Wow, Jenny, Ravilious saucers at a car boot sale!

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  4. Love your vases of flowers. Jacqui x

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  5. I've never tried printing, other than maybe the odd potato print when I was very small. Your prints look great. I always think there is something very pleasing about repeated motives. I love Angie Lewin's work too.

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  6. Dear Streetcomber
    Great start to your lino printing journey. It is such a satisfying thing to do, especially when all the elements come together and you get one print you are happy with! I have done a bit of lino printing and love the process, even though it can be so frustrating.
    Angie Lewin has an exhibition at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park until 23rd February - I am hoping to get there, but am not sure I'll make it...fingers crossed!
    Best wishes
    Ellie

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    1. Hi Ellie, I have seen news of the exhibition at Yorkshire Sculpture Park, I would love to go, but it's a long way for me. So many great exhibitions at the moment! There is a print exhibition at the Millenium Galleries in Sheffield, too. My brother lives there, so I might get to that one at least.

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  7. It's a beautiful art form isn't it....it's frustrating when things don't go to plan, you're doing a great job, keep going can't wait to see how this one develops! :) x

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