Monday, 11 January 2021

Printing

Things are ticking over slowly. I’ve made a plate from the drawing of the fools in a cage 

 and printed it.

 
 I struggled with the mountboard that I used for the plate. It was stuff I got in a hurry at the beginning of lockdown, not my usual sort and it needed peeling much deeper to get to the rough internal core I need for the darks. This made a step on the plate that was a bit too much for my small press at home to deal with, leaving some white haloing in parts. I may try on the big press at Hot Bed when we can return.

The chair of our book art group is currently making a video for BABE about our group project “An inch a day” and the difficulties of making a group project (which will be about 90 feet long) when we cannot meet up to work together.

This spurred me to trying to make some relevant images for it. As a warm up up I tried monoprint.

Trace monoprints

 Stencils 

 And dark field monoprints. 

 All tacked onto a sample of the book base fabric. All made using an X cut (die cutting Machine). I was amazed how well they worked and this will be a much simpler and quicker process than the collagraph plates I had envisaged making.

(Does anyone know why new blogger keeps randomly altering my typeface?)

Saturday, 2 January 2021

Moving into the new year

My puppets are slowly developing into print. I've got the first block drawn out ready to start working into.


While I was doing that I had some ideas for the words for the slotted tab book that I was working on before Christmas. 

The words impose a structure because they have to be revealed in the right order, but I still want the feel of meandering, not straight forward page turning, while reading it. I also want it to look like a section of maze when it is opened out.
 



This is a mock up which uses the slot and tab and the woven paper joinings that I have been exploring recently. Now I need to work on the imagery and refine the text.

Saturday, 26 December 2020

My favourite things

 The art society has set a theme of 'my favourite things' as something positive for members to work on over this strange Christmas period.

As books and narrative have always been one of my favourite things. I thought about using fairytale characters and situations as my subject matter

Theatre, both to watch and to take part in (strictly backstage only) is another of my favourite things and I've also been enjoying experimenting with making puppets recently.

I think I'll enjoy the combination of theatre, puppets and fairy tales

 As a starting point I made some flat articulated figures to play with.


 




Monday, 7 December 2020

Slot and tab

 My slot and tab experiments have developed into this.


I painted the papers dark blues, greens and purples on one side and put the complementary colour on the reverse.

It folds up reasonably well if you know the order to do it in.


Whilst I was making it I had an idea  for a book. But I'll need to alter the colour scheme and make the folding more intuitive.


 
While I mull over the words the book needs I think I'll take a break and play with puppets.

Tuesday, 1 December 2020

Cutting and playing

I've been getting carried away with slot and tab construction.

From this 


To this

And playing with basic puppet construction



hopefully leading to drawings, and then to print.

Saturday, 14 November 2020

Recycling and folding

Carrying on with just using paper I wanted to see if it would work using a heavier weight painted paper.

At the beginning of the first lockdown I did a free painting course called ‘find your joy’. It was a good course but my joy isn’t found in painting. However I did keep one A3 sized piece of work because I liked the marks and limited colour palette. A readymade piece to experiment with, although as it is only painted on one side this made the book construction more complicated. 







 The book is made using every bit of the painting and nothing else. It has become my book for #areyoubookenough_recycle.

Wednesday, 11 November 2020

Just Playing

I’ve been experimenting with making a book using only paper. That’s not difficult I hear you say but I mean only paper, no glue, no thread, no extras. (I am allowed scissors and a knife).

I used A4 coloured copy paper so that I could see the joints clearly but I’m not keen on the colours, they are a bit sugary.


 Although the method of attaching elements and pages means there is some detail on both sides of the page this book definitely has a front and a back.

 The next stage is to devise one with a balance of interest so it can be viewed from both sides. 

And as an experiment here's a video in close up

 



Saturday, 7 November 2020

Emotional Times

It’s been a roller coaster of a month. My lovely dad died. And then on the day of his funeral Holly, our beautiful sixth grandchild, was born.

Making art didn’t happen much. Until last night when realising it was the NWBA zoom meeting in the morning I decided it was time to make something.

I went into the garden in the dark and rescued some leaves which I used to make a few double sided gelli print papers (the gelli plate seems to be my go-to method at the moment if I need something coloured to play with).


I used three of them to make slight variations on a single sheet folded book that I found in Alisa Golden’s book (she credits Paul Johnson with inventing it).


Version one has all the pages glued together and could be made with artwork on just one side of the paper. 


 Version two has one pair of pages left unstuck to provide a hidden space. 


And version three only has one page glued which makes an interesting structure with hidden spaces whichever way up you hold it.

 A small start but it was good to make something. 

(apologies for the colour in the photos - I thought I'd be clever and adjust the white balance for photographing indoors at night - I'll settle for auto in future)

Sunday, 11 October 2020

Rain, rain, go away

Every year in July I decide it’s a good idea to sign up for the 20:20 print exchange at Hot Bed Press. Every year half way through September I start to panic that I’ve no ideas, or at least no ideas that are feasible in an edition of 25.

This year was no exception. But then looking through my sketch books (or more accurately piles of loose sheets in boxes) I came across my scarecrow drawings. Subject matter found.

I decided to etch because my collagraph plates start to disintegrate with larger editions (and 25 for me is a larger edition)

It took a couple of goes to get the bite right (the first plate seemed to have developed a sort of grain right the way across the figure) but I’m quite pleased with how she turned out.