Wednesday, 26 March 2014

a step closer .....

A mentoring morning with Fiona and I am so much more at ease ..... I think!  I have been tense and wound up and not at all relaxed about this work and then talking it through with Fiona this morning, realised that though I am quite happy with some of these prints as etchings, the difficulty I have with the work is seeing it as a book.

I had the thought of making an irregular concertina book - various sizes in fold and in page which will make it more of an artwork than a picture book.  This also means that all of the imagery is not revealed at once.  The thought of just turning the pages and seeing what came next (which works so well with some of my books) did not solve the issues I have been having with the presentation.  As yet I haven't even done all the artwork but for me, having a sense of the piece, the way the images and the negative spaces all speak to each other and relate, gives me a way forward. So, now that I can see a way forward, I will relax and enjoy the process.  I can hear a big sigh of relief from those around me .....

And Fiona's book - well, you will just all have to wait and see.  It is oh so very gently, exquisite.

Then again, I could just cut up the work and use small parts of each image.

Thursday, 20 March 2014

magpie business .....

It feels a bit like pulling teeth but I am getting there.  I think that one of the reasons I am having such trouble with this book is that for a very long time, I have been way more interested in mark making, suggesting traces of images, a sense of narrative rather than revealing a whole story and so forth.  With this book, the story will seem more succinct - more readable and apparent.  This has been a problem for me in working within a more realistic manner and finding a balance between the 'drawn' image and the slightly more abstract.

I am happy with where this imagery is leading though each page I print seems like an enormous effort.  Truth be told, I will be glad when the book is done and I feel quite confident that I will be far more in touch with my printmaking skills at its conclusion.  At the moment it is a struggle!

Tuesday, 11 March 2014

stuck in tidings of magpies .....

I have been working hard trying to work out ideas for this next collaborative book and I am resolving more of what NOT to do that what needs to be done.  Maybe in a strange way that is bringing me closer to some sort of resolution - though I can't see it yet!

Very happy with a background plate I am using for this book - not all my pages but probably about half of them with have this print base.  The marking is quite serendipitous and scrumptious.  I found these on the back of one of my early prints and have been waiting for the right moment to use it in a meaningful way.  Think it will add to this book - certainly I like the look of the eggs printed over the plate marks.

Was planning on a different day tomorrow but have decided to stay put in the studio and try and get some momentum happening with the magpies.

Friday, 7 March 2014

inspiring little leaf .....

I have spent two days working very hard in between other 'things' in the studio - printmaking.  Printing editions from plates I have made previously on door knobs and flowers - hard work and not all that inspiring.

And then I found this wee leaf and it made me smile ....

Have a vibrant and happy weekend everyone - I am off to visit my daughter in Lismore.
Can't believe I have her only three hours away this year.

Sunday, 2 March 2014

sand drawings .....

A really busy couple of weeks in the studio while Steve has been away ... planning my next work with Fiona and also making the plates for these etchings of sand drawings and doing a number of prints towards an edition.  

Technically these are not as complex as some of the works I have done but trying to find the essence of these marks, the lightness and ephemeral quality of them, has been my hope and my struggle.  I first printed them too heavily and preferred the 'second pull' of the prints which though they looked washed out, certainly looked more like the work I was trying to achieve.  It took me ages to realise that if I were painting these marks I would just add white and soften down my palette ..... duh!  So, out came the white printing ink, just a small tube, that I bought about five years ago and have never used and I was able to mix the colours I wanted.

I have printed on both Fabriano Tiepolo paper (from which I think I have the better result) and also a gorgeous Japanese paper which will change the character of the print if hung over a darker background.  I had plates cut out as surrounds for two of the etching plates on which I loosely engraved and these were printed simultaneously.  Because I want the prints to keep their lightness, I will 'float' them in perspex frames.

All this work is for the 'Journeys" Exhibition to be held this Easter by the Maleny Printmakers and my work is titled Journey Along the Shore.  If you can, save the date and come and visit me there or in October I will be having a two day Open Studio so perhaps you can come then.  More details about all that closer to the time.