Thursday, April 5, 2018

Easter Over?

Well that seems to have passed my by......

So much printing done I didn't really notice Easter even happening...but my Easter Tree has to be done every year....even just to bring a little colour and cheer....I think the duck liked it!!! and amazingly enough my cat avoided
 This is the card that I made this year.  I always try and aim to make a specific card...but as usual only decided to at the 11th hour. Each time it seems its using a new medium and I chose this one to work on and add Chine Colle Easter Eggs.  The front eggs is gold chocolate foil which worked great.
I rather love it....

So many prints ....many are complete but many will have a further life.  Got lots of ideas.

Watch this space


Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Pushing the snowdrops

Following on from last week on this post I will be showing how I used the Gelpress plate with lino to produce more prints in a different way and also how to use water soluble crayons too.

I like to push an idea and take it further and this is not exception.

I line up my materials:-
Mangle, Gelpress plate, Lino block, acrylic paints, water soluble crayons and oil pastels, baby wipes, paper and water spray

Now Im ready to go.....

Watch the VIDEO here

FIrst the Gelpress plate.

I chose my colours.  Dark and light blue and a green and rolled out a thin layer and pressed the lino block into the wet paint

Apply even pressure to ensure that all the surfaces have taken the paint

I then put the block onto the press (converted from an old mangle - see previous post with video) and placed the paper over the top and covered with card and cloth and ran it through the press.  You can of course hand burnish the prints or use a wooden spoon too

The prints always come out nice and crisp and depending on where you place your colours always very unique and interesting.

I repeat the process.

I also use pre printed mono prints to print on creating another very different look.  In this case very soft and romantic.

This way the lino block will almost have a never ending life (Be aware though that Lino does have a life and will eventually crumble)

Watch the VIDEO here

You can of course pull many prints off the gel plate directly having pressed the lino block into the paint.  This gives yet another look that can be worked on later.

Next I use water soluble crayons and water-soluble oil pastels (yes a weird concept but they do exist).  These I love as they are so easy to use and they blend well together too

Water soluble pencils both the regular kind or Inktense are another alternative and the results are more permanent as the Inktense are ink based.  All these work beautifully  and create yet another look

I rub the colours that I want onto the block, in this case taking care of choosing colours to match the subject.

I then lightly spritz with water and lay the block on the press.  The water loosens the pigment which then transfers to the paper.  You can also play with spraying the paper with water.  Cover with paper and card and cloth and card again and roll through the mangle.

I result is more subtle than the acrylic but effective none the less and this can be altered depending on the amount of pigment you put on the block.  The paper can also be a major factor in changing the look of the print.

Practice and push the  limits and see what you can come up with.

This little one I printed directly into a sketch perfectly and can be enhanced later if I want to.                                                                          
                                                                                                    Watch the VIDEO here

I haven't finished with the lino block watch this space for the last part

Bix x

See previous post for Lino Snowdrops Part 1 including another full video

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Spring Snowdrops - Lino Print (using Brusho)

Black on Colour
2nd Cut

Snowdrops - Lino prints
I am an experimentalist (not even sure that's a real word - but I like it). 

I like to play and push theories as far as they can take me and maybe further. 

So as a newbie with Lino here is what I recently did.....

Once I discovered the joys of printing, first via a Gel Plate and then doing collagraph work I was hooked (see previous entries) and desperate for some kind of "affordable" printing press.  So I started my search.

Valentines day last year my search ended at Ebay and found this baby for £15.00.  I still wasn't sure if it would work, but I was determined to try.

In this project I am Lino printing using my mangle as a printing press. 

 I have prepared it by rolling in a large MDF drawing board and made a registration jig using two corners of an A4 mount which has carefully been measured around the lino block aperture.

  Here you can see that that aperture is larger than the block I will be using as I have squared it off.  This did not really cause me any problems as I fitted it each time to the top left corner.  Double sided tape can be used to keep the block in place

The mangle set up with the registration board
I taped down the jig and set my rollers to the pressure that I need for lino printing.  This would be set tighter if I were to collagraph (or intaglio) print.

I have two A4 board pieces taken from the back of old sketch pads and a large chammois style cloth folded in half.

I later replaced one of the A4 pieces for a much larger piece to cover the whole area.

I rolled out a few practice runs till I was happy with the pressure.  This is important so that you do not ruin any potential prints.

Another theory I wanted to test was the use of Brusho powder in tinting block printing ink for printing from Lino.  I have searched everywhere for reference to this and found nothing.  So I thought I would see if it works.  The same goes for the Brusho thickener......I needed to find another use for it.  So I played.......

I printed all the backgrounds using these colours

My materials for this project

Ist cut - leaving the white
My Lino block
Black and White Block printing ink (waterbased)
Brusho in Blue and Yellow
Acrylic Paints
Brusho thickener to help with consistency
Brayers or rollers
Tile to roll out colour 
Different papers and card.

I began by planning my design and then cutting out the areas I wanted to keep white.

I then wanted to print some pretty backgrounds using light blues and greens.  This is achieved by putting down some of the white block printing ink on a plate and sprinkling in some Ost Blue Brusho powder and added some of the Brusho thickener that was now in gel form. As the white ink was waterbased this was possible. DO NOT TRY WITH OIL BASED INK.

I worked the mix till I got the right colours and consistency.

Here are examples of how they turned out.  The thinner the mix the more Iiked it.

I love the gentle texture the Brusho gives on these prints.  

2nd cut
Ink loosened with Brusho
I did my 2nd cut on my block. 

 This area will show the how much of the background I want and the first printing of stems and leaves.

  The ink is very very thick so I added some Brusho gel to loosen (not water)
  I worked the ink till it was tacky and sounded like velcro.

 I decided to do a black run first.

Just Black on White
Black on colour

These turned out to be very effective.

I like both looks.

I then rolled out a brighter green first with brusho
and later with acrylic paints 
(which I have found to work very well) 
and did my 2nd cut green print over the backgrounds


Different looks are achieved by using different greens and different rollers too.

The softer the roller the denser the print.  I made my own soft roller using a childs sponge roller and replace the sponge with a cork covered in foam sheet stuck with a glue gun....

Worked perfectly......

I also printed the green over previously pre printed monoprints for a very different subtle look

The last stage was doing the 3rd cut which will show some of the lighter green as highlights etc with a darker edge. 

This time I used a combination of blue and green acrylics.

A final print on textured paper
I like using acrylics for various reasons, but one is that it's permanent and therefore if I want to embellish these later the colour won't run. I could use oil based inks but I don't have those and they take longer to dry.

I am still very new to this method and many of the prints were not perfect for various reasons.  But I have learnt so much during the process which will enable me to achieve a better quality batch next time.

Although the block I am left with doesn’t have much left on it it still has enough to give an impression of a group of snowdrops and I can play more with this idea later.

Watch this space.

VIDEO I have made a video showing the processes and the results.  Click on the link here

Thank you for joining me here and if you have any comments please do not hesitate to ask in the comments below.

See you soon

Bix x

NB: Brusho products from Colourcraft Ltd , Blocking printing ink from Seawhites of Brighton