Sunday, May 28, 2017

Creation and Process of "Authenticity"

Earlier this year, end of February beginning of March I finished this print.
"Authenticity" is a limited edition reductive linocut print that was submitted to the Horned Toad Print Exchange in El Paso. I do have a few left over prints that didn't make it into the print exchange, which can be purchased here.

Here are some step by step photos of the process.

Layer 1

I use marmoleum which is flooring linoleum for my carving, I love it because it's a lot more durable than the battleship linoleum many people use. Also it holds up small detail much better for longer. 

As per usual I start with the lightest and warmest colour, it sets the tone for the rest of the print.
This is the inked block.

reductive linocut process by Maria Doering

First layer printed.

Then as with all reduction prints, you have to print that first layer on every sheet, because you will carve away more from the same block, there is no going back. 

Layer 2 

After carving more detail I am ready to print the next layer.

Layer 2 is the first time when you see colour overlap, this is sort of a brain twister for everyone who first starts doing reduction. Everywhere you carve away the previous colour will be shown, everything you leave behind will cover up the previous colour with the next. Any colour layer after Layer 1 cannot be experienced as pure, because it will sit completely on top of the previous layer and as these inks have transparency any colour printed on top of yellow will have a yellow influence.

Layer 3

Carving of layer 3

Inked up block. 

Layer 3 printed overtop of Layer 1&2. 

And printed on all the sheets in the edition.
Layer 4

Layer 4 being carved. There is always a tipping point when I carve reduction. It goes from carving more and more detail into the block to eventually removing more and more of the detail that you carved. I've also established my highlights and am now at the lower end of the mid-tones.

Layer 4 inked and ready to be printed. 

Layer 4 printed and editioned below:

Layer 5

This is the first cool colour that I printed, in general I am drawn to warm colours so most of my prints have an overall warm feel to them. But it would never be a successful image for me without introducing some cool colours to create the illusion of depth in my imagery. 

There isn't much more detail that can be added in the block, so now more and more I will remove segments all together, only small areas get printed in the blues.

Layer 6

In layer 6 the block surface is shrinking pretty significantly. 

But these layers will define the detail and depth of the print the most, they will make all the other marks jump out at the viewer. 

Layer 7

This final layer is really a cleaning up of areas of the block, only leaving areas behind that I want to be the darkest. As I am using Akua inks, I find that around this time the ink starts having trouble absorbing into the paper as the paper is getting pretty much sealed up. So if I know I am going to go beyond 7 layers I will have to add dryer into the ink. 

A few details of all 7 layers on top of each other. 

Each one of these prints in this series I have also printed a few on shoji baika rice paper. 

reductive linocut on rag paper
Edition size: 10 and II5

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

B&W Block Printing Workshop at Visual Voice

On February 18th, I taught a B&W Block Printing Workshop at Visual Voice Gallery in Truro with such a wonderful group of ladies. Here are some process photos: 

Haley carving her block from a piece of Marmoleum.

Inking her block to pull a proof. 

After a few changes, she printed a limited edition of her block.

Her block, first proof, second proof and edition.

I love the experimental nature in Janet's mark-making. Below the print on the right was an early stage, what amazing texture, but compositionally it didn't quite work so she changed it by carving much of the "sky" away and now the island has a lovely glow.

In every relief class I hand out little test plates so people can get a hang of the material and decide which material they would like to use for their project for the day. I always love it when students turn those little test plates into images as well. Here a bunch of little fishes carved by Suzanne. 

To get a hang of hand printing, we pulled a proof using a barren. 

The main block is Suzanne's christmas card for 2017. (I envy her foresight. Having your Christmas cards finished in February. Amazing!) 

A quick hand-printed proof. 

Changes made and Suzanne's block is now ready to be editioned on the press.  

Registration (alignment of paper and block) in single colour printing is not crucial but it is never a bad idea to practice it now so it is not as awkward when you try printing a multi-coloured print later.

Lovely results!

If you would like to try out these fun workshops at Visual Voice Gallery in Truro, I have 3 more of them scheduled this month:

All workshops are $75 per workshop.
Limited space, Pre-registration required 902-843-9464.

Monday, February 27, 2017

2- day Monotype workshop at NSCCD

On Sunday February 12th and February 19th, I had a wonderful time teaching a Monotype workshop at the Nova Scotia Centre for Craft and Design (NSCCD). The first day was focussed entirely on experimenting with black Akua ink only, while the second day was all about colour.
 Here are many of the student's experiments. 

Amanda enjoyed the effect that happens when pressing textile scraps into the ink, especially seams and pockets and she created an entire series of interesting prints.

Experiments with cut paper and Monotype.

Nat created some beautiful experiments with many different found materials before she honed in on a look that she enjoyed.

That red ribbon made for interesting texture. 

So many interesting experiments!

In this print Nat experiments with different size q-tips for wiping and very delicate thread.

Amazing how many monoprints can be made in one day! 

I even got to play a bit with the materials and created this one by pressing feathers into the ink and then wiping the area around them. 

During the second sessions we experimented with colour.

I love that Nat brought her own pre-cut shapes with her to start experimenting with. 

Amanda bought a few clothes at value village so she could continue her ink experiments. 

Ghostly print of a child's knit jacket.

I love how this one has almost an X-ray effect. This is Amanda experimenting with tiny infant socks. 

And Sleeves. 

These very interesting textures happened when Amanda pressed broken text book spines into the ink. 

More Children's clothes. 

I love the interesting effect that Nat created in this print.
Something magical happens where the magenta, blue, yellow ochre and black meet.

Two very carefully composed prints Nat created. the repetition in textures and patterns is beautiful, I think they go together very nicely.

My favourite thing about teaching Monotype is that you can never tell what people are going to do as the possibilities are quite endless. And it is so fun to watch a student figure out which elements they are most interested in.

The next Monotype workshop I am teaching will be at Visual Voice Fine Art in Truro on March 4th and March 31st. Please call 902-VIEWING (843-9464) to reserve your spot.