Category Archives: viscosity printing

From my travel sketches – solar plate etchings

barberini_solar_prOh, Sunday was the last day for this year of my opportunity for printmaking. I enjoyed it sooooo much. I only go three days a year, and I missed one because of travelling. I needed to make some new plates, but what with the rain…it wasn’t easy.

One drawing had been transferred to drafting film for a week or so, but the other (the Bali one) was only finished on Friday. Saturday was, to put it mildly, changeable. I waited till after ten oçlock for enough strength in the sun to expose the plates, but then the clouds came over. I did the one of the Balinese carving from the gate at Kalibukbuk first.  While I was exposing the plate to the sun, raindrops starting falling on the glass, and I would quickly wipe them off with my apron. (I wear an apron so that I can put my timer in the pocket).

kalibukbuk_solar_prAfter some rain, finally it stopped and I exposed the Barberini door drawing anyway, though there wasn’t much sun. As you see, it is fine. While you are exposing the plate, you just have to make sure you are not holding it anywhere where shadows might fall. Once the plate has been put through various processes inside the house, it is time to post-expose it in the sun. Hmmm, yes, the sun came out but the whole courtyard had trees dripping on it. Water ruins solar plates. so I had to wait till the late afternoon when the sun comes to the front of the house, put the plates outside and sit just inside the front door, guarding them.

Luckily, it was all worth it, both plates were fine.  I am really pleased with both of them. Of course I can’t take credit for the beautiful Balinese carving, but my interest was in rendering the way the light fell on it.

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Filed under Bali, Italy, Print-making, solar plates, viscosity printing

Collographs for artist’s book

I have been working on collographs for this artist’s book for about three years now. It will be about ships and shipwrecks.I only have the opportunity to use a press for three days every winter, so it is not just a matter of ‘getting on with it’.

I made 11 collograph plates and discarded one of them. Although I had two good sets of 10 prints, I lost interest for some time because I couldn’t think of a way to hang them together as a book.

Earlier this year while I was swimming laps, I concentrated on this problem, got in the zone, and came up with a solution. I then decided that two sets was barely an edition, and I would do another set. So on the last two printing days of this winter/spring, I printed another set.

If I was a purist, each print in each edition would be printed the same, however that is not the case at all. The first two images are printed from the same plate but look how the colours vary. As I’m printing in a group situation, and I’m not the one to choose the inks for viscosity printing, each printing day brings a new set of colours. The two middle prints  (of seaweed, and of ship’s ribs)were printed on the same day, but with different parts of the large roller which had a blend of colours all along it. The other two were printed on different days. I suppose I could keep note of the colours and ask for the same ones. However I didn’t say I was a purist, and the thing I have always loved about viscosity printing is how each print is a surprise when  it comes off the press.

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Filed under collographs, Print-making, ships, viscosity printing

New solar plate etchings

At the end of October I went to my last Printfest of the year. That’s when I take my plates along & just print all day.  I had two new solar plates this time, made from my own sketches.

For some reason the ink on the big roller with the blend on it wasn’t cooperating, and I got stripy areas with less pigment. No matter how much I wiped the roller, replenished the ink & rolled it up again, I still got some stripy variations in the pigment. Maybe it was the weather.

This first print is from this drawing. It was inked up in sepia with red on the flowers. Unfortunately we lost the red because of having to roll over more than once to get rid of stripyness. That’s printmaking for you.

The next plate is my blue-point Himalayan cat, Casper. These two prints were done by laying threads on the plate, then rolling across with a hard roller with a single colour on it. Then the plate was rolled over again with the large soft roller with the blend. The ink only picks up where the previous ink missed. (Read about viscosity printing on my glossary page).

This plate was taken from this drawing on the lower right.  I think I prefer the blue, because he is blue-point, but both colours were available, so I tried both.

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Filed under cats, Print-making, solar plates, viscosity printing

More solar plate etchings from last weekend

Here are more solar plate etchings I printed last weekend. The bins are from photos I took in the factory where the Matisse and Derivan acrylic paints are made. They are just wonderfully textured and coloured from a myriad layers of rivulets of acrylic paint dripping on them over the years. I thought the texture would be fun to use on a solar plate. Once I had the photo transferred to acetate, I drew into the dark areas around the bins. The one with the yellow is viscosity printed, with part of the image masked while they yellow roller was rolled over it. The other image only had the roller with the blend.

The little machine is from a drawing I did on the harbour at Blackwattle Bay a couple of years ago. I traced it onto architects drafting film with a pen, then I put some tones in with Liquid Pencil.

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Filed under Liquid Pencil, Matisse Derivan, Print-making, solar plates, viscosity printing

One World – One Heart – Giveaway

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CLOSED – Winner being drawn

Lisa, at A Whimsical Bohemian has started this bloggers giveaway event that gets bigger and bigger each year. All you have to do is comment on this post and you can be in the running to win one of these items shown below.  Visit Lisa’s blog to find hundreds of other bloggers who are participating in this fun event. Winners will be chosen randomly on 15th February. You can win! Please comment below if you want to win any of my giveaways.

Update and change – 2nd Feb

Lisa has asked me to have ONE DRAW ONLY with a first second and third prize. I am changing accordingly. First person drawn will have first pick etc.


BIRD SOLAR PLATE ETCHING – Fine art print.

This is a solar plate etching print of one of my drawings. It is a gang gang cockatoo, drawn at the Australian Museum last winter.  It is viscosity printed onto BFK Rives paper. See the glossary above for more about this process. The size of the print is about 8″ x 6″ on paper 11″ x 7.5″.

QUEEN Ann of Cleves – Collograph – fine art print

This is a collograph, viscosity printed onto BFK Rives paper, mostly in Prussian Blue and Sanguine. The subject is Ann of Cleves who was one of the wives of Henry VIII. (It’s part of a series.) The size of the printed area is about 8″ by 10″ and the paper is 11″ by 15″. I made both the collograph plate and the solar plate myself and also printed them.

The prints will be signed before I send them.

BOOK – Exposed spine binding.

This is a handbound book, made from heavy watercolour paper (300gsm) that I decorated myself. It has an exposed spine binding. Size is about 8″ by 7″.  It has 14 pages (that’s 28 surfaces) and one side of the paper is decorated like the cover and the other side is decorated like the other image.

All surfaces are coloured so it would be suitable for gluing stuff on and writing, but only suitable for drawing if you used a bold pen.

Make sure when you comment that I can find you. I’ll have to be able to email you if you win.  This event is meant for active bloggers only.

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Filed under collographs, drawing, solar plates, viscosity printing

Solar plate from drawing….

gang_gang_solarI made this solar plate from a drawing I did at the Australian Museum. At first I traced it onto architect’s drafting film, the way I did with these pomegranates. Unfortunately I over-worked it, which was so obvious because the original was much freer. I threw it away and instead did a photocopy onto acetate.

This has been inked up in black with a raw sienna beak, then masked across the bird while a blue colour roll was put on, then the blend was rolled over the top. It did start with a red crest, but didn’t really show by the time the print was made.

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Filed under birds, drawing, Print-making, solar plates, viscosity printing