Thursday, 11 July 2013

Dr Betty's Cat

Oi! Salty Dog you might like this post  Once. when I was staying in your house near Mutley Plain after we'd partaken in a bevvy or two (or maybe it might have been a few more than three!), I woke early and took some pictures from the window of your bedroom which you, as a top mate, had kindly given up for me.  I loved the way that the lines of the roof tops on the houses going up the hill overlapped and how these were bisected by the telegraph wires.  Have a look next time you're home.

Now I'm back talking to my entire audience.  Hi guys!  The link that I highlighted above leads back to a progress note of the start of an printing project that, judging by the date of the post, I started months ago.  How time flies!  Eventually I got some proper hessian backed lino and made rather reasonable progress with cutting a cat picture for the lovely clinical psychologist, Dr Betty.

Then I came to a halt and Betty, you'll be pleased to know that I've analysed my own thinking around why this was so.  It was lack of self-confidence in working in a new medium alone.  My only other experience of printing from a linocut was in a studio with lots of specialist equipment and a tutor.  There was a terror of failure around working with just a load of cobbled together  materials that  I'm sure other crafters must know.  It can only be overcome by either returning to a  supportive classroom setting or grasping the mettle and getting on with the job yourself.

As I want to be able to indulge in this hobby in the comfort of my own home rather than driving to Exeter everytime I want to have a go,  I put together a bit of kit.  There's some proper stuff like a rubber roller and  water based printing inks in black, white and the primary colours from Handprinted, a helpful Ebay shop.  Nice knobbly textured artist paper is being sourced, for the timebeing, from Trago Mills until my confidence increases to a point where artisan handmade stuff might be an option.  The rest of the supplies show inventiveness of which Heath Robinson would be proud.

Do you know those chocolates that are like Ferrero Rocher but are white with coconut?  Well, the clear plastic box from some of those is where I roll out my ink.  Instead of using a beautiful century old printing press I've experimented and found that a rolling pin rather well if I roll over the paper in different directions once its on top of the cut lino.   That worked better for me than the wooden spoon suggested by some! Learning Linocut, a book by Susan Yeates has been very useful in lieu of a home tutor to help me get through the glitches like uneven ink distribution.  So now I've achieved the  first home spun lino print that I'm sufficiently  proud of.  Let's hope that Dr Betty likes it!

1 comment:

  1. Lucky Dr Betty, I love your print! Thanks also for the tips and links, I've done a few Linocuts a while ago now, but you've inspired me to have another go.

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