Tag Archives: collographs

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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Winners in Magic Carpet Giveaway

I used the random number generator to choose the numbers and the first winner was Gail Stiffe, a papermaker from Melbourne, who had chosen the collograph of Ann of Cleves.

The second winner is Arlette from Costa Rica who does quilting and all sorts of stitchery. Arlette gets to choose between the book and the solar plate etching of the bird.

And the third is Fran from Phoenix who is a textile artist. Congratulations to all of you. I already have made contact with two out of three winners. Congratulations to you all.

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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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Two more royal collographs

mary_scotsTwo more collographs from my British Royals series, others of which can be seen  here and here. The one in the green dress is Mary Queen of Scots. She was pretty scary looking when I did the first proof. However, I then added some Matt Gel Medium to her face, with a little Burnt Sienna added. That meant that I could see her features & what they were likely to print. Previously I’d just used Gel or Impasto, which was a bit silly of me. Mary’s face, hair and hands were inked up in Raw Sienna, then  the dress in green and the chair and underskirt in blue.  I did a yellow colour roll and then a blend, of which I had the reddish- brown at the top. I then wiped back her face and hands.ann_cleves

Ann of Cleves was printed on a different day, with different colours on the rollers, but still a yellow for the first roll, then a blend with pinkish-red at the bottom. She has been inked up initially in Prussian Blue and Sanguine. ‘In the flesh’ the sanguine looks marvellous.

Printmaking is over for the year now. What a shame. I will miss it.

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Mary and Henry – collographs

Last Sunday we had another Printfest day, with teacher Seraphina Martin, viscosity printing collographs. Here are two from my new series of Royals. These two are the ones I’m most pleased with.

Making the collograph plate of Queen Mary was the most interesting. I used Impasto Medium to paint her face, and as I was doing it, it became obvious to me that Queen Mary’s bone structure is so like Princess Anne’s.

I can remember the day Queen Mary died. I was in the ‘office’ of my father’s furniture shop, and he explained to me that the reason that there was only dirges on the radio was because the old Queen had died. How times change!

But the other interesting thing about that is that my fathers ‘office’ was also used for furniture finishing, and it smelt of wood shavings and shellac. Now I am using shellac to seal my collograph plates – we’ve gone full circle.

Henry looks evil, doesn’t he? I’ve got another one where he has a green birthmark- it’s worse. I found by trial and error that the portrait ones work best if the faces are wiped back after the colour rolls.  I didn’t do quite so many prints last week, as I inked up the portrait ones a la poupee (see glossary) instead of inking up the whole plate with the same colour.  So I DO have more to show you, but no time to scan them at the moment. It’s been a busy week.

Fortunately Seraphina has extended the Printfest (yippee, yippee) and will be having another day late in September. I’ll try to finish my plate of Queen Victoria for that one. She’s wearing the same tiara as Mary.

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Royal collographs – and the plates.

This print is a new one made from an old collograph plate that I made when I was at the Sydney Gallery school, maybe 5 years ago. This image was mostly made using impasto, on a base of mat board. A paper serviette was cut for the ruff collar, a piece of textured paper and a sticker for the headdress, and some minute sequin-type objects to decorate the dress. The hair and the fan are also textured papers.

You can see better on the collograph plate. This is the reverse image on mat board that one inks up and puts through the printer with the paper.

I’m now  doing a series of royals, but the only print I’m satisfied with so far is the new one of Elizabeth at her coronation.  This one also uses impasto, but a lot of stickers. Those gold ones that you have to pick off the backing paper- the ones that sometimes say ‘happy birthday’. I think you can probably see them quite clearly on the plate. The snood is fine Japanese paper with a grid texture, and the dress is fine paper that has a silver and white swirly print. (You can see that effect best on the bodice.)

I’ll be reprinting some of my other new ones (Queen Mary, Henry VIII, Catharine of Aragon) next weekend.

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Finally ….more collographs

It’s over a week ago that I did another Sunday printing collographs with Seraphina Martin. Another terrific day. I had NINE new plates to print. Some of them are from my ‘ships and  shipwrecks’ theme, and others are my new theme ‘queens & kings’. There are such beautiful textured papers about, and not all of them are organic in style, so they’re not all suitable for the ships. I have the Gloriana plate that I love, so I decided to do another series in that dIrection. I  printed all nine new plates. Some are better than others. Portraiture, of course, is not easy. Some of the ones I printed are definitely only ‘proofs’. I will have to ink them up ‘a la poupee’ to get a better result. (See glossary).

I wonder what other people think about ‘tinkering’ with prints, when they’re not wholly successful. If you’re at art school, being assessed on your printmaking skills – well, then its unthinkable.   But how about now – when I’m only doing printmaking for pleasure. The paper is expensive (I use B F K Rives) and the prints are perfectly all right give or take a bit of coloured pencil.

Anyway, these prints have not been tinkered with. They’re how they came off the press. I’ll have to post the ‘royals’ next time.

No time to do it now.

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