Introduction into my linocut printmaking day - printmaking without a printing press
I have become very used now to writing about my printmaking days, and I am really enjoying the process. I don't think I would ordinarily stop and reflect about the actual printing side of making them, and this is making me do so. I hope you have equally been enjoying coming along for the journey.
I had a very lucky printing day this time around, and even though I was focused on filming the whole day, as this time I filmed my the whole day and process - which can be viewed here - most of the prints turned out really well from first try.
I am still printing without a printing press for the moment, so I had my usual setup and station with the linocut plates on one side, and the paper on the other.
Linocut Printmaking without a printing press using water-based inks - mistakes that can happen.
Even as this was such a lucky day, above I have a good example of a print that did not work out, and I was so happy to catch this example on camera. You can see so well in the light that the layer of ink is too thick, and you can even tell by the way the paper stuck to the plate, and formed a different shape due to the heaviness of the ink.
This can happen sometimes especially after you use a plate multiple times, and you keep layering ink on top of ink. It is important to add water every now and then and either clean the plate and start over, or add the water to the ink to make it thinner. If you choose the later, you have to wait slightly before printing it again for it to dry a little. Since I can be impatient and postpone doing this, I pay for it later on.
Like I said this series gave me some wonderfully perfect prints. As you know and as I have explained in other printmaking blogs, I enjoy creating the conditions for watermarks to happen on the paper, by not fully drying the paper before printing. But this time, I got some really perfect prints, I think because I was also occupied by filming so the paper had more time to dry. I have to say I enjoyed seeing them in clean cut versions, as this does not happen often, since I normally look to cause these patterns formed by water.
Red Original Linocut Prints - Read more about colourful linocut prints here
I also had to finally finish the RED series this day, and I managed to do so. Colourful inks are often a slightly different texture to black inks, in my case they dry a lot quicker, and you have to play with adding water to them a lot more. Because of this they can be more inconsistent in their results, and yet this time around I had no issue with them, and I got some great, and again very clean cut prints.
My new collection of larger original linocut prints
I am currently working on a new collection of original linocut prints and original monotype prints inspired by the circus. These two larger examples are two of the prints that will be part of the collections, and I have started printing their series. Shop my current collection of limited edition linocut prints and original monotype prints.
The series will be out towards the end of August and I could not be more excited about it, as it also includes a 31 x 31 cm large linocut print, that will be very busy with characters, which I cannot wait to see how it will come out (and by then I will have a printing press too, so my process will upgrade massively).
Larger prints can be slightly more difficult print without a printing press, but if you use a heavy object to press down on them, like a large book, and you are very careful to put the same amount of pressure evenly and covering the whole surface of the work, you are golden. In some way, due to the larger amount of details in larger prints, they are easier to print, as there is less room for error in the design. When a print has a lot of dark space, the ink can gather strangely, and a lot more accidents can happen.
At the end of the day, the house was covered in prints as it normally is, and this time, rather than the usual half that are approved by me to be part of the series, I approved a third of them which was very impressive!
If you are wondering what I do with the prints that don't get approved and have slight mistakes, I keep those as Artist Proofs. Traditionally, Artist Proofs don't really get sold, although some more famous artists do still sell them. But because mine often have slight mistakes and not just aesthetic inconsistencies, I wouldn't want to sell them, however, if you purchase artwork from me, you might just find one of them sneaks in your package ;).
This time, I even filmed the process of me making the prints, which you can view here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zyJLlkwekCw
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