Galleries

I’m delighted to have my prints in the new National Trust gallery at the Sexton’s House in Widecombe. The upstairs of this beautiful old building is now full of work by many craftspeople and artists and it’s all selling quite well, so well done Pam Thomas and all her helpers.

I also now have original prints in the long-established and lovely Artworks gallery in South Brent.

Drawing to print

I’ve turned another drawing into a print, this time I’m more pleased with the result, which is a bit of a colourfest for me.

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I started with the drawing above and did four layers of colour, each a blended roll from light to darker at the front.

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I also tried to use cooler colours blues and purples in the distance and warmer yellows, oranges and browns in the foreground. I’ve missed the second step out. The third is below.

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And here is the fourth and last.

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It’s a bit odd-looking, and I’m not so happy with the blobby cutting in the trees, but overall I’m enjoying the oddness.

Reduction linocut

Having done a drawing I was reasonably pleased with, I’m in the process of developing it into a linocut, which is tricky as it’s my first attempt to represent trees in this way, i.e. not winter skeletons, but full-blown leafy summer trees with their puzzling patterns of light and shade.

Devon fields

I’ve scanned it, reversed it, printed it out and copied it on to a piece of lino – actually not lino, but vinyl flooring which I prefer. I’ve just traced the outlines on to the plate at this stage, as I only need to know where the edges of things are and the drawing will probably rub off in the printing process.

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Now I have to work out how many colours I can use and what they’re going to be, or, rather, what I’m hoping they’ll be, as there’s only so far you can control them in this method.

I printed a warm light grey as the first colour (it’s actually lighter than in the pic), then cut away the sky. Next I printed a blonde brown cornfield-like colour on top and cut away some of the fields. Then I printed a light green, leaving me at the stage shown in the pic below.

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Next I cut away the remaining field shapes and the lightest tones in the trees and hedges, giving me roughly…….

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And then I cut away the next lightest tones in the trees and hedges, a bit randomly, then I mixed a bluey-purple colour with lots of extender, so very light, to give a darker green layer. That ended up like this…

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Then I cut away again and inked the plate with a cold blue, and thought I was finished, but decided the final shadows weren’t dark enough, so cut away almost everything, leaving just little shapes in the parts where deepest shade should be, I hoped, and inked again with a cold blue and got:

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I wished I’d left the final shapes slightly larger, as I thought these last spots of dark green were good and in retrospect I would have liked more of them in the foreground, but it was too late. That’s the thing about reduction ….. you can’t go back. Next time I’d have more contrast in the trees and maybe some detail in the fields.

Mixing colours

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I spent some time today using my Caligo Safewash printmaking inks like paints, mixing greens, browns and golds from warm or cold blues, reds and yellows, with the aim of building up charts of of colour mixes I can refer to.

It quickly became bewildering, so not sure if it’ll work, but I quite liked the look of the bits of cartridge paper I mixed the colours on.

Crux Craft Fair 2014

What a fantastic event Crux was! Great people, friendly atmosphere, top quality handmade art and craft, informed and interested customers and delicious cakes. I thoroughly enjoyed the three days, apart from a minor meltdown on day one due to a lack of g-clamps and a wobbly shelf, and would recommend it to anyone.

Not that it needs much recommendation, as on Saturday you could hardly have squeezed another person in there. To say it was popular would be like saying I quite like cake.

Best open studios

Sad that open studios has come to an end. I really enjoyed the past two weeks. All our leafletting and the help we received from the lovely residents and businesses of Ashburton – especially Kate Higham jeweller and cafe Francolin’s – paid off. We had almost 300 visitors and sold enough to keep us happy. Thank you everyone!