Fifty shades of green

Posted on July 18, 2015

“Land, Sea and Sky” is now on exhibition in “Celebrate” at the Devon Guild of Craftsmen, until 6th September.

For my next project I am exploring a green palette. Hence the title of this blog Fifty Shades of Green.

For inspiration I have been looking back at my photographs of the bright fresh greens of the Peak District in early June, while staying at Blore Hall, near Ilam.

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The sunlight on fields, woodland trees, dappled shade over rivers and ponds.

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I adored the fields of buttercups – the golden yellow hovering over the green – the texture is just crying out to be captured in a collagraph plate.

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How to create this range of greens in the studio? I have printed lemon and primrose yellows over ocean blue and turquoise lake; and over crimson on white and black Somerset paper. By varying the transparency and thickness of the inks I am obtaining differing hues and tones of green.

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 My visit to the Peak District timed perfectly for the hawthorn blossoms. The clear white flowers and the bright translucent leaves against the blue sky made for a perfect June day.

I love the shape of the gnarled wood of the hawthorn hedge and the patterns the branches have made interwoven with the remains of a fence.

 

 

 

 

 

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The boundaries of fences, hedges and dry stone walls and the lines of pathways all form inspiration for boundaries and edges of shapes in my prints and collages. For the printing plate I am using textiles – blanket pieces hand stitched with a herring bone stitch to create the pattern of fields. These are textured with an artist’s medium before being sealed and printed by the intaglio process. This creates a beautiful rich embossing.

I have been printing sheets of paper for use as collage, just as Matisse did for his Cut Outs, The magnificent exhibition of these works at the Tate Modern gallery last year was a joyous inspiration.

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Mondrian’s shapes and compositions are reminiscent in this farm building in Tissington, and also in my work in progress, prints hanging up to dry in my studio. These may well have further printings and/or collaged printed papers applied. I shall be working on these prints over the next few months, heading towards Fifty Shades of Green, with the deadline for this project being “Life Illustrated” 12 October – 15 November, which will also show my sketchbooks. The sketchbooks and workbooks will form a future blog.

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Land, sea and sky

Posted on April 23, 2015

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The three carborundum prints, “Land, Sea and Sky” hanging in my studio are now dry and are an inspiration for me to return to the same plate and explore further colour-ways. It’s interesting how when I first printed them I favoured the prints with the red band but now I’m going to experiment further with transparent and opaque blue hues.

The sea across Lyme Bay yesterday was silver and merged into the distant haze around the South Devon and Dorset coast. White horses shone in the early morning sun. The sea in Torbay was extremely lively. The waves at high tide dashed over the seafront with great force, and the whiter than white spray glistening in the sun looked quite joyous and shouted with a freshness that it’s great to be alive. This feeling of exhilaration and lifting of the spirit is something that I’m endeavouring to capture. Today the high tide had a grey fury and threw its treasures over the seawall at tourists and cars alike.

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Rolling the relief ink on the glass slab. The plate has already been inked with the intaglio blues. Photograph by Julia Finzel.

The photographer and printmaker, Julia Finzel, spent an afternoon in my studio taking photos of me working. She is undertaking an interesting photographic project about artist printmakers who have worked at Dartington.

The colours I am mixing will have a higher chroma than the blues of today’s sea: for the intaglio colours – I have added viridian to azur, ocean or orient blue and violet with Prussian blue, and for the rolled blues extender with thalo, royal and ultramarine blue. Lots of inks were used and extender tubes now empty! I must now order some more tubes of intaglio extender and relief extender.

 

Welcome to my blog!

Posted on March 11, 2015

Welcome to my blog! I’ll be blogging soon, watch this space!

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