Sunday, August 31, 2014

Lino Printing on Paper - A Bit of a Disaster

I have been interested in trying some block printing on fabric so when the opportunity came up to attend a two day lino printing workshop I grabbed it. However it was lino printing on paper and the course focussed on reduction lino printing - where the lino block is gradually cut away as each layer of colour is applied. In the end nothing is left of the block, so totally impractical for multiple printing on fabric. Really a course for serious artists I think. Nevertheless I persevered - it is an interesting technique and taken to great heights by some printmakers, of whom I now have the greatest admiration. See the websites of Anna Curtis and Vida Pearson for example.

My original idea was to try one of my screenprint designs and see how it worked as a linoprint. I chose this one


I spent hours carving the lino - very hard on the wrists, and applying three different colours as is required for a reduction linoprint. Blue (background), green (foliage and flowers) and black (nuts and branches) - more carving in between each colour application. The block print inks are very sticky and so it seemed to get everywhere and even though water soluble it was quite hard to wash off. And I thought screen printing inks were messy!






I'm loath to show any closeups - they were all a bit too awful. Anyway I don't think I'll pursue a lino printmaking career any further, but am not giving up on simple block printing on fabric.

My next post will be showing some of some block print fabric designers I admire.

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