Sunday, 4 October 2009

More Watercolor based Monoprints

As per the previous post - these two circular monoprints were made onto a prepared surface of rice paste which was left to dry over night.  This white grainy plastic might be mylar I actually don't know.
It was given to me when I was artist in residence at Lowick Print Workshop in Cumbria (now defunct) although perhaps Abacus postcards are still in operation.  I say this because the guy who owned that business was somehow involved with Lowick.  It really was a wonderful place in terms of the landscape the facilities and the great technician who was there to assist me, printmaker,  Emma Grover.

Getting back to these monoprints - they are about 37 cm diameter.  Whereas the previous circular substrates were about 22cm at the largest.  I just applied the caran dache water based crayons and swirled the colors about somewhat.  I then left them out to dry.  About 2 hours later they were dry enough to put through the press.  While I was waiting I worked on some others such as this square one on a sheet of perspex to which I had glued a piece of true grain of the same size, with PVA.  It is gradually coming loose,  so I will have to re attach it soon.

I loved the way this one behaved.  I put some of that water color ink that I mentioned in the previous post and I dropped some water on it and it seemed to 'coagulate' almost like cells in a medical diagram or macro slide.

I will definitely use that again but as I said the product is no longer being sold by the manufacturers.  They must have replaced it with something similar though.  This ones 12 x 12 inches or 30 x 30 cm.

Next another circular print which I think almost has the look of a planet or something relating to the cosmos about it.

Just watercolor crayons although I seem to remember that I used some actual paint from my box of half pans of w/c paints to redden up that red.

Again it had to dry before it was put through the etching press.  We had also loosened the pressure from it's usual position for etching plates.  Probably a half turn anti clockwise.  By now I was wise to the very important step of laying the dampened blotted paper on the press bed with the blankets over it for 3 minutes BEFORE rolling it through the press!!

This I refer to as Kangaroo one, the first one I did using the kangaroos,  cut out from a tomato puree (aluminium/ or tin) tube.  I have in the last few months become fascinated with what I can do with packaging from the kitchen that would otherwise be thrown away.  Although we do have special bins for recycling tin and aluminium cans and containers.  We also have one for paper and another for plastic.  I did scribe into the shapes but after going through the press a couple of times I noticed that they had become quite flattened.  Maybe it would be better to use less pressure when using these in a particularly focussed way OR maybe I should have scribed in deeper (not that the material is that thick!!)  Anyway in this one I had applied the Caran dache crayons 'dry' and they didn't fully release as can be seen.  I liked it though and might do something further to it on another occassion.  I shall put in the pile,  I have next to my etching press, of "Prints to do further work on".!!

Here are the little blighters !! I am rather fond of them for some reason and a couple of days after I had been working on these prints at the FDPW print workshop I couldn't find them and was asking people there if they'd seen my little kangaroos and I don't know what they thought at all, at all !!

Another time a few months back I lost my little transparent polypropylene cat ( a leopard profile) and was lucky that fellow printmaker there, Jane Matthews found it for me.  I have done a few printmaking elements using cut outs of this material and some using the tom puree tin also.  It's so sad because I am now thinking of the song "Skippy, Skippy, Skippy ..the bush kangaroo" one of my favorite TV programmes from my childhood.  Rushing home from school to see it.  I think we just had one TV channel at that time in Ireland and it was only on from about 6pm to midnight.  Happy days!!

OK so I know this one looks VERY similar BUT it is a different one.  I liked the way the kangaroos came out on this one but prefer the background on the first one but such is life!! aye ee vay !!    I quite also like the somewhat droplet like(ish) marks.  I am just thinking that these kangaroos almost look a bit like they are going through water ?? ....what's that all about ..........
Both were done again with the caran dache w/c crayons.  I have met quite a few artists who have never used these ........which quite surprises me - they really are excellent and very liberating.

This final image is  one of two attempts at trying out screen mono prints on a rickety small silkscreen (using the crayons again) with Lascaux screen transparent base.  It's usually added to screen inks to make em more transparent.

Around this time I started to remember that when I went to the very first Impact printmaking conference that a chap there gave me a huge tub of screen printing base and I thought to myself OMG where on earth have I put that, as I was thinking hey this could be a great way to generate backgrounds for prints.  Especially larger ones.  you see I had had so much trouble doing larger backgrounds for prints using plates where I had rolled on the inks and no matter how careful had always ended up with roller marks.  So now I have purchased my own aluminium screen + squeegee of medium size figuring that when I want to do a larger one I 'd need FDPW help  so I'd be doing it there and using larger workshop squeegees.

Oh and a happy ending, in that, I found the tub of screenprint transparent base - something I never thought I'd ever use but I do like the idea of playing around with scren printing just with colours and stencil in quite a free usual we shall see!!

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