Wednesday, March 4, 2009

resuming work on recent relief print

I was away from my studio for nearly a week due mainly to a seasonal illness that made it very difficult if not impossible to perform any type of physical activity.

None the less have recovered to the point where I have resumed from where last left off. The time away did give me an opportunity to reflect on where I wanted to go with the image both in colour application and textural qualities, so have made a couple of alterations.

The first change is in the key block (the main black image) which is printed as the final colour to define everything. Additional small cuts have been made in the solid black water (central part of the print) to allow for a little more reflection of leaves in the trees. A few larger areas were gouged out of the linoluem in the immediate foreground to indicate a play of dark shadow with bits of lighter coloured ground revealed in between.

Decided to add another subtle colour into the print to define the rock along side of the water.

To achieve this have used thin non-corregated sheet card board as an alternate surface to create the relief. I am using the unused half of one side of an existing block (in this case the card block with the textured scratchfoam which creates the pock marks in the rock surface when printed in a slightly darker colour over the solid).

What I did was make a pencil outline of the rock area from my original sketch on tracing paper. I then marked off the corners of the block on the tracing paper for positioning on the new block.
I set a piece of black carbon paper underneath the tracing paper and retraced the outline onto the block. Then I traced the image outline again with the carbon underneath onto the thin piece of cardboard, the shapes were carefully cut out using an utility blade knife and pasted into the locations marked by the carbon outline on the block. I then sealed the cardboard with a thin wash of acrylic mat varnish applied by brush.

Here is a photo showing the block with the cut solid cardboard pieces in the lower half glued down and ready to print the solid subcolour areas for the rocks. The top half (the reverse side) is used as the surface relief to create the flecky texture darker tone in the rocks (it is printed over top of the solid colour.)

The block is inked up on the solid half (masking off the other half of the block using a piece of paper to act as a barrier). the block is then positioned in the brace and paper is placed over top and printed by running through the press. I then wipe off ink and apply a darker colour of ink to the textured relief side (same method) and rotate the block in other direction in the brace so that it prints over the solid layer.

The scrap of cartridge paper pictured below was used as to test proof the two colours printed one over another. The stains in the paper were made by tiny bits of oil which I didn't notice on the table surface after the paper was set down on it. This isn't an issue at this point, but when I do my actual printing on good paper it will be carefully set in a safe dry area to avoid any unpleasant accidents like this.

And finally here is the proof (without the blue and green layers) showing the main key block printed in black used to check that the edges match up according to the registration system (which they do.. woo hoo!). Unfortunately the speedball black water base ink I used for test proofing came out slightly blotchy on the paper as it had partially dried on the block by the time the print was made. I will be using black oil base ink for the final run. You will notice the little additional cuts I have made in the key block

1 comment:

  1. WOW! very impressive! Thanks for all the information and how to!