T1-MMT-P4 Mono and collatype printing: Sorting

It’s mostly pleasant and somewhat cathartic to reach this stage of the assignment process. I’ve gone back through all my posts, looked at all my prints, and seen the journey from stumbling first steps to innovation and a level of confidence. An overview of all the prints can seen on pinterest – www.pinterest.com/fibresofbeing/mixed-media-for-textiles-assignment-4/. In Sorting I have identified a number for comment.

print p4-8

print p4-8

Print p4-8 (18-Oct-2015) was an early sign of hope in the challenging first days of this assignment and combines a number of ideas to take forward – uneven colour mixing, energetic lines, repetition of simple elements – lines and swirls. It doesn’t have to be complex to be effective.
[Project 1 Initial experimentation]
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Print p4-17

Print p4-17

I was unhappy with print p4-17 at the time (25-Oct-2015) although it has some interesting marks. I’ve included it in Sorting because it was an attempt to copy directly marks seen in Giovanni Benedetto Castiglione’s Creation of Adam. I tend to take little bits of information from my research, but this print is a reminder of the learning value in direct copying.
[Project 1 Exercise 1]
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Print p4-22

Print p4-22

Print p4-22 (25-Oct-2015) includes lifting colour and texturing with crumpled foil, overlaying colour and creating a line with ink-covered string. I like the dynamic line and the way it extends just over the borders of the plate. The string would be a fast, interesting way to “draw” when recording samples in the future – a different way to see shapes.
[Project 1 Exercise 1]
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Print p4-29 detail

Print p4-29 detail

Print p4-29 (27-Oct-2015) used a lot of stamping and layering as well as marks drawn into the plate. Craft foam can be easily cut to shape and makes a good stamp. Breaking out of the boundary of the plate can be effective. What I most like about this print is the complexity of overlaid textured colour.
[Project 1 Exercise 1]
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Print p4-32 shaped

Print p4-32 shaped

Print p4-32 (27-Oct-2015) was my first attempt to break into three dimensions. It used paper crumpling and shaping learnt in Part 1. The texture created by printing then partially opening the crumples is attractive, but it’s the shaping possibilities that really interest.
[Project 1 Exercise 1]
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Print p4-34 part unfolded

Print p4-34 part unfolded

The move into three dimensions continued with print p4-34 (27-Oct-2015), which used paper folding to create a three colour print. When displayed partly folded the print shows different colours and patterning depending on the angle of viewing.
[Project 1 Exercise 1]
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Print p4-37

Print p4-37

Print p4-37 (3-Nov-2015) is included here not for any particular ideas to take forward but because despite flaws I see it as my first satisfying image. There is depth but it isn’t overly realistic. The colours are limited but effective. A range of mark making techniques were used, and they combine well to create a variety of textures. This is one of three variations of the same design, based on a painting by Monet. The other versions used water soluble crayons and oil pastels and were not successful.
[Project 1 Exercise 2]
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Print p4-45

Print p4-45

Print p4-46 detail

Print p4-46 detail

Prints p4-45 and p4-46 (11-Nov-2015) both record a sample from earlier in the course, p2-76. In fact they respond to a sketch based on that sample. I have chosen them for their exuberance, as an example of using printmaking as part of the creation process, and because of the problem-solving shown working towards the energetic lines I wanted.
[Project 1 Exercise 2]
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Print p4-60

Print p4-60

Print p4-60 and its companion p4-61 used layer of backdrawing and ghost printing to examine one of my favourite samples, p3-33. The print evolved from a number of ideas, explained in the original post (14-Nov-2015). As an image it’s a bit of a mess, but it’s a great success in terms of seeing the sample and developing material that could be taken further.
[Project 1 Exercise 3]
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Print p4-70

Print p4-70

Print p4-70 is one of a series of prints using stencils in project 1 exercise 4 (22-Nov-2015). The image is based on a jug used earlier in wrapping exercises. This print shows interesting colour work, mark making using a tool I devised and decent registration. At the time I was encouraged by this as showing my progress. I like the graphic qualities with just the smallest suggestion of depth. The wave lines respond to the water theme of the jug itself. I see this as a good response to the brief.
[Project 1 Exercise 4]
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Print p4-72 detail

Print p4-72 detail

Print p4-72 from the same work session was influenced by my research on Paul Klee. There is a freedom and quirkiness in the line achieved that I like. There is a range of markmaking with various devised tools that works well with the imagery shown. With the mix of colours it is altogether more light hearted than much of my work.
[Project 1 Exercise 4 – a return to exercise 3]
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Print p4-75

Print p4-75

Print p4-75 (also 22-Nov-2015) is the ghost of earlier jug prints. I’ve included it in Sorting because from a printmaking perspective it is poor, but for me as an image and idea starter it is rich. There are interesting lines and textures, a kind of vibration – it isn’t flat. It speaks to my interest in boundaries, in open possibilities and uncertainty.
[Project 1 Exercise 4]
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Print p4-76 layer 4

Print p4-76 layer 4

Print p4-76 (7-Dec-2015) was my first print created using a gelatin plate (thanks to fellow student Lottie for the suggestion). It’s an example of risk – these plates aren’t part of the course. It’s an example of failure – I pushed a step too far in an elaborate plan and “ruined” some very exciting stripes. It’s an example of influence from research – I was thinking of stripes and textile development by Julie Paterson (missed in the blog writeup – see 13-Sep-2015). Plus nice use of masks and an interesting test of new-to-me products and colours.
[Project 1 Extension with gelatin plate]
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Print p4-77 layer 4

Print p4-77 layer 4

Print p4-77 from the same session is the ghost of the previous print and better shows the imagery I was working towards – although even this is simplified compared to the original plan. The design is based on the same jug as the earlier mask. Here it’s interpreted in fish stencils swimming in a stripy sea. More good techniques for developing ideas and quite an attractive result in itself.
[Project 1 Extension]
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Print p4-81

Print p4-81

Print p4-85

Print p4-85

I’ve included two more prints from the gelatin plate fish sequence – prints p4-81 and p4-85 (7-Dec-2015). They show the wide range of results that can come from a single idea. In my earlier printmaking attempts I repeated slightly different things trying to make something work. By this stage I repeated to learn something new each time. Perhaps in future design development that will be one of printmaking’s strengths – after a little setup time, a fairly fast way of generating choices and variations.
[Project 1 Extension]
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Print p4-89

Print p4-89

Print p4-89 (13-Dec-2015) uses my first collage block. Keen to bring forward materials from earlier in the course I risked thick, rigid materials such as computer components and plaster chips. This two colour version took hard work to print manually and is deeply embossed. The circuit card top right and insect screen bottom right are standout results with complex colour mixing. I think this is a good example of risk and reward when not following standard guidelines.
[Project 2 Exercise 1]
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Print p4-97 detail 1

Print p4-97 detail 1

I find print p4-97 (14-Dec-2015) thrilling. Part of another series of experiments, it uses composimold and polymorph samples from assignment 3 as stamps lifting colour from the gelatin plate. There is crisp, intricate detail, particularly from the composimold. There is so much potential in these new materials. I can take molds of anything that can stand a bit of heat and print in fine detail. A further experiment would be to mold a shaped surface and see if the mold could be flattened or cut open to use as a stamp. Could a plate be made from composimold then warmed and textured to create a semi-permanent plate? I tried something similar later with polymorph (27-Dec-2015) but didn’t have time to work through teething issues.
[Project 2 within Exercise 1]
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Print p4-104

Print p4-104

Print p4-104 (14-Dec-2015) is unfinished business. I was testing a variety of stencil materials and a particular method of inking, pressing and removing to use multiple colours. As a result I see yupo paper and to a lesser extent wet media acetate as potentially very useful materials. The colour combination didn’t work, but I have ideas for my next attempt.
[Project 2 within Exercise 1]
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Print p4-109

Print p4-109

Print p4-109 (17-Dec-2015) represents a pivotal point in the development of a printing process in which I see huge potential. It took a lot of effort to get a reasonable print on paper from my polyfilla collage block. In p4-109 I rolled colour on the gelatin plate then pressed in and removed the polyfilla block. The print that resulted shows great texture. It’s not as crisp as the earlier example using composimold but in many situations that would be an advantge. Being able to print a plate direct or via the gelatin gives a lot of flexibility and more opportunity for developing variations.
[Project 2 Exercise 2]
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Print p4-126

Print p4-126

My first plate for project 2 exercise 3 didn’t really work as a design, but I’ve included print p4-126 (23-Dec-2015) as a later example of the developing print process. The gelatin plate was rolled with colour. The polyfilla plate was also rolled with colour then pressed into the gelatin, both adding and removing colour. There was some further manipulation then the print taken.
[Project 2 Exercise 3]
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Print p4-128 view 2

Print p4-128 view 2

It seems a logical extension that if I can print from flatish textured plaster then it’s worth trying shaped textured plaster. I chose cast plaster sample p3-48 as my three dimensional printing block. Print p4-128 (25-Dec-2015) was the better of two results. It could be very interesting to create a series of forms, some the original cast, some the printed shapes. I’d like to make a smoother cast and carve into it as a form of markmaking. Or perhaps in an grouping carve into the plaster which is now coloured to reveal the white underneath. An idea for the next assignment perhaps.
[Project 2 Exercise 3]
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Print p4-137 detail

Print p4-137 detail

Print p4-137 (27-Dec-2015) is a chance by-product of yarn texture sampling for the next collage block. I haven’t examined quite what happened to get that effect, perhaps related to the strength of the ink and how the collage plate was pressed into the gelatin. It would be useful to be able to reproduce this, but experimentation is required.
[Project 2 Exercise 3]
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Print p4-145

Print p4-145

Print p4-146

Print p4-146

Prints p4-145 and p4-146 (27-Dec-2015) are two versions of a collagraph block inspired by a beach in Western Australia. They are a good example of the printing options developing. Both were printed in two layers, the first being colour rolled and textured on the gelatin plate. Both use the same collatype plate for the second layer. P4-145 was printed direct from the mountboard plate, with lots of hand burnishing. P4-146 was printed via the gelatin plate, with an excess of ink. Quite different results.
[Project 2 Exercise 3]
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Print p4-150

Print p4-150

Print p4-152

Print p4-152

Another interesting comparison is provided by p4-150 and p4-152 (30-Dec-2015). The collatype block used was mountboard with modelling paste used as both glue and support for a range of textiles, with acrylic matt medium used as sealant. The idea was that by embedding the texture sources rather than just gluing them on I could get more consistency in the height of the plate and thereby easier printing. P4-150 was printed on my little craft press and shows good texture from fine silk up to coarse hessian sacking. P4-152 was printed using the gelatin plate, rolled with yellow then pressed with the collatype plate which carried residual blue ink from another print. Very different results with different but interesting textures, using the same collatype plate.
[Project 2 Exercise 3]
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Print p4-160 detail

Print p4-160 detail

This detail from print p4-160 (31-Dec-2015) is included because of that faint trace of newspaper classified advertisements. This came from observation of the gelatin plate when excess ink was blotted using an old newspaper. The barely visible text is legible because it has been reversed twice – pressed into the gelatin then printed on paper. Will this work with darker inks? The newspaper was a few years old. Will newer editions work? What an interesting way that would be to integrate current events. Or shapes could be torn from the newspaper, perhaps forming text with text…
[Project 2 Exercise 3]
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Print p4-162

Print p4-162

Print p4-163

Print p4-163

Prints p4-162 and p4-163 (31-Dec-2015) are in my opinion the best of a series inspired by banded ironstone formations. P4-162 was a complex affair involving the gelatin plate rolled with colour, textured with heat distorted plastic (from earlier assignments), colour partially lifted using newsprint, modelling paste collagraph plate separately inked, dabbing with two colours, then pressed into the gelatin, and finally a print taken. P4-163 was the result when I cleaned the collagraph plate by putting it through the ezicut press. I like them both.
[Project 2 Exercise 3]
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That feels like rather a large Sort, but I see them as presenting different areas of interest and it’s actually less than 20% of the prints produced.

The last item I would like to include is attitudinal rather than a physical print.

I found the earlier exercises very difficult. I examined some of the reasons for this in my reflection of tutor feedback on assignment 3 (8-Nov-2015). I was finding getting ink on the page very technical, I was stuck in the fundamentals, it was hard to let go of expectations of “good prints”, it was all so two dimensional. In assignment 3 my failures became glorious and there were exciting successes. Suddenly it was all failures.

Challenging myself, I tried to keep focus on the purpose – printmaking as one stage of creation. I found positives in details, developed and followed up ideas, suspended disbelief. I tried to look at and understand the reasons underlying both negatives and positives, learn from them, and move on.

Baldly – it worked. Over the weeks, as experience grew, work began to flow and I could be more responsive to what was happening in front of me. I have built up a foundation set of materials, processes and knowledge. The last couple of days while re-reading old posts I keep wanting to jump up and try one of the ideas that fell to the side. Why on earth did I never go back to put colour on the front of the stencil? The happy thing is there’s plenty of time, as printing becomes a standard part of my markmaking, recording and ideas development repertoire.

Taking risks, responding to failure, feeling vulnerable – recurring themes, but I feel my resilience and eagerness continue to grow.

T1-MMT-P4 Mono and collatype printing: Sorting
Part 4: Mono and collatype printing
Sorting

1 Response to “T1-MMT-P4 Mono and collatype printing: Sorting”



  1. 1 T1-MMT-P4 Mono and collatype printing: Review | Fibres of Being Trackback on January 3, 2016 at 4:56 pm

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