Squash Screenprint

I carried on my recent screenprinting adventures by signing up for a second course at City Lit. This would consist of 5 sessions, 3 hours long. This time I wanted to try to get away from thinking about printed layers as in a linocut print; which is sort of what I did when I made my flower screenprint. Though I am pleased with that result, I wanted to explore more what screenprinting can do as its own medium. Two things I was interested in exploring was painting into the screen and pulling monoprints, and making a halftone photo-stencil which would convey tones.

I wanted to use my recent squash watercolour work for my photo-stencil. I combined in Photoshop a collaged image that showed a range of tones as grayscale and so should work as a halftone image. Halftoning is where the image is made up of a variety of dots, similar to printed newspapers. The final image below in black and white is the image I used to make a halftone photo-stencil.

For the first layers of my screenprint; I combined painting into the screen and pulling monoprints; and then using a paper stencil to print a slightly transparent teal colour on top. This meant that all the backgrounds would be slightly different.

I really like these backgrounds, but I was worried that as they have strong colour and bold shapes, my squash photo-stencil would get too lost when printed on top. In screenprinting to get an opaque colour you need to add white, which makes it difficult to get strong opaque dark colours.

I wanted to print my photo-stencil in red; below is a screenprint of just the stencil on its own; and then printed in red on top of my printed layered background. I admit I was disappointed, I did think that the red squash did not jump to the foreground enough; so I switched to the darkest and most opaque ink – black. I printed my series in black ink; but on reflection I now think I prefer the red inked squash! I would be very interested to know your thoughts on these final images?

I have really enjoyed screenprinting and I think it suits my figurative style of drawing, especially when combining monoprinting, paper stencils and photo-stencils. I look forward to continue  to work with monoprinting and paper stencils in my home studio; probably combining with linocut printing too.

(© Catherine Cronin)

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Flower Screenprint

I hadn’t done screenprinting in many years until recently when I signed up for a beginners class at City Lit. Here are the results of that short course, a multi-layered Flower print. The prints with the most colours were created by printing a rectangle of block colour (orange and blue);  using a paper stencil to create the green colour of leaf, stem and flower petals in part; and then the photo-stencil of my flower line drawing in red or black ink. For some of the prints I off-set the photo-stencil and printed it a second time which makes those prints a bit hard to look at! a bit psychedelic! I also printed the flower photo-stencil on its own and I intend to work into these prints with drawing inks. Fun times! I’m looking forward to making more screenprints.

(© Catherine Cronin)

Printing the edition ‘Marigold’ Multi-block Linocut 2015

Just thought I’d share with you some photographs of the process of printing the edition ‘Marigold’ linocut.

As it was a multi-block print I needed a way to register the blocks against the paper. I used a sheet of acetate marked up on the reverse with marker pen, showing the bottom right corner of where the lino block should be placed and where the bottom right corner of the paper should be placed. Acetate can be wiped easily of any ink that may stray onto it.

When printing I used bits of scrap paper to place on any areas of the lino that had accidently picked up ink that I didn’t want to print (I wanted a clean white paper background).

I used water based inks: Caligo Safewash Relief and Schmincke Aqua Linoldruck ink.

I printed using a hand-press onto dry Zerkall Hand-Made Printing Paper 210gsm.

(© Catherine Cronin)