Monday, July 11, 2016

The Lorikeets and the Gothic Tree

Put birds in it.

A very busy week in Artlandia!  First off - lorikeets. 

So...I had been thinking (uh oh.)...usually, when I marble paper, I only use one color or one family of  related colors and then black and/or white, but for these, I wanted sections of different colors, and I wanted them in specific places, and I wanted to be able to repeat the placement on multiple sheets [ - and, and, and -  ;)].  I didn't think the Suminagashi style of marbling that I usually use, where the colors sit on the surface of water, was best suited to this, so I decided to try something different. 

I made monotypes by rolling up a gelli plate with actylic medium, then adding and manipulating the colors, then spritzing it with water before putting on the paper...

colors pushed with a clay tool  in medium
 before adding water

resulting paper - thumbs up, and an added bonus, the gold showed
up well 

Still exploring and streamline the process, but overall, I think it worked well and the results were what I was looking for.

Then, I scanned the block and worked with it in photoshop and printed it onto a polyester lithography plate.  I made it just a little smaller and changed the position of the head a little bit so that they look like different birds and not straightforward mirror images.

I decided that I would only use them together if I could get the polyester plate to match the relief print in quality to the point that the difference in technique is undetectable when comparing the two side by side.

(*This is an important issue to me right now because, if I can get them to match well enough, then I can use this process to make the second in a pair of the large scale wings. If not, then I'll carve the other one...and since the first one took 6 months to carve...I'm pretty motivated to try to make this process work O:) ).

The verdict: success! Holding them right up against one another, they're a match - the difference in technique is practically undetectable. (Yay!!!!) Though still some kinks to work out - there were misprints with the lithograpy plate, only about half of them were crisp and even enough to match the relief prints (there were no misprints of the relief block). With the work that went in to monotyping the paper, any misprints are a bummer, so still some work to be done refining the printing process so that the polyester plates print well consistently. Still - it worked!

8 good ones

 Then, the second big project of the week - proofing the Gothic Tree block!(!!!)

2 x 4 ft tree block!
I was super excited to be there printing at the public debut of Big Ink's new, custom built, giant press, and not only is it's mobile! So cool.

It was fun meeting other artists working in relief, hearing about everyone's process, and seeing the unique blocks and prints that resulted.

Moment of truth when the print came off the block :D! 
drying - such a smart way of hanging these up to dry 
I didn't get too many pictures during the printing (hands all
inky and occupied, but here I am very, very happy (and inky)
with the proof, which will become part of the Big Ink archive.)

In garden news, my favorite flowers this week are the red roses - I think I may have fed them just right this time, and they're doing well :).

I also planted some new zinnias...and somehow, so far, they're all pink (! - noooooooo), and the new rose that was supposed to be red...also looking distinctly pink (eep!)