Oak Leaves & Acorn Linocut

Autumn has arrived in this colourful print of oak leaves and an acorn. Actually there are two timelines in this print, the green acorn and green leaves of the summer, and then the hint of autumn change with the leaves turning orange and a blustery sky. I love the shape of oak leaves and the beauty of the sun shining through them especially when their colour is changing.

This linocut is a 6 colour linocut, created from three blocks which printed the first three colours; and then each block was further cut to remove more material and then these were used to print the last three colours. This method of printmaking is known as a multi-block reduction cut; and it means the edition cannot be printed again as you no longer have the earlier stages of the blocks to print from.

Printed by hand using Caligo relief water-based ink on specialist printing paper, Zerkall 210 gsm. The yellow highlights on the leaves and stems were hand coloured with acrylic ink (making the seventh colour in the print).

This edition has 15 prints in total and it is available in my Art Finder shop.

Here is a gallery of rough proofs for each colour printed.

 

 

 

(© Catherine Cronin)

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Top tip: How to correct slippery relief printing ink

I’m using Caligo Safe Wash Relief inks to print my ‘Oak’ linocut. When it came to printing the dark green layer defining the acorn and its leaves I found the mix of phthalo green and phthalo blue ink was really slippery, it didn’t roll out like ‘velvet’ and I didn’t get that ‘kiss’ sound between the rolled out ink and brayer. I tried to print with it and found it was filling my cut lines and blobbing on the cut edges of my lino block.

Find me on ebay

After researching the web, the solution that kept coming up was to add magnesium carbonate to the ink, which would ‘stiffen’ the ink up. I found that art branded magnesium carbonate is expensive and sold in a large quantity. Instead I bought 50 grams of magnesium carbonate via ebay, from a company that sells it in a pure form for use in food products, cosmetics and a variety of other applications – who knew!

I added half as much magnesium carbonate to my ink and mixed well. The result was a stiffer ink that rolled out like velvet and didn’t clog on my lino block. I recommend giving this a go if you too are struggling with slippery ink.

This is my ‘Oak’ print so far; I’m just figuring out if I’m going to add another layer to the orange leaves…

(Apologies for poor photos but my camera ran out of battery power!)

© Catherine Cronin)

MAY SPRING SALE – PRINTS – 15% OFF

I’m having a May Spring Sale in my online shops; to get 15% off price in my Etsy and Folksy shops please use coupon code MAYSPRINGSALE. The discount is already applied in my Artfinder shop. Enjoy!

(© Catherine Cronin)

SOCIETY OF WOOD ENGRAVERS until 19 Feb 2017

I visited the annual exhibition of work from the Society of Wood Engravers at Bankside Gallery this week – if you are interested in printmaking you have till tomorrow to see this exhibition.

Here are my favourite three prints from the exhibition in no particular order – it’s always the birds that get my attention time and time again. Click on the images to be taken to the artists’ websites.

witts-julian-black-grouse

Julian Witts, ‘Black Grouse’, Black & White Woodcut.

 

brown-peter-the-stalker

Peter Brown, ‘The Stalker’, Linocut

 

fowler-rosamund-cherry-blossom

Rosamund Fowler, ‘Cherry Blossom’, Wood Engraving

Last weekend for Art Hub Print Open: 23 & 24 July 2016

Last weekend for the Art Hub Print Open exhibition at Art Hub Gallery in Deptford.

The gallery is a 15min walk from Greenwich Market, I recommend doing both! Have a look on this map https://goo.gl/maps/HHwTapfKi8z

Ever wondered what I look like? Well here I am on the private view night with my two colourful Alhambra linocuts.

ArtHubPrivateView2016

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And One I Missed; Gert & Uwe Tobias Exhibition

Sometimes too much choice can be a bad thing; it can paralyze you and then the opportunity is missed. Living in London I am so lucky with the variety of art exhibitions available at any given time; so many. I make a mental note to go to this one and that one and oh, don’t forget that other one; and before I know it they have closed. Ah thankfully there is the worldwide web, I can experience partially what I have missed. One that got away was Gert & Uwe Tobias at The Whitechapel Gallery.

My particular interest is in their collaborative woodcuts and collage pieces; often on quite a large scale for a woodcut. Their image making is vibrant, bold, thought-provoking, and sometimes refuses to be pinned-down. They flow though figurative to abstract in one piece, yet the image as a whole retains a strong identity.

Below an interveiw introducing the exhibition of Gert and Uwe Tobias; and some of my favourites from their work.

Video – Introduction to Gert & Uwe Tobias

© Gert & Uwe Tobias Untitled 2012; Whitechapel Gallery

© Gert & Uwe Tobias Untitled 2012, Whitechapel Gallery

© Gert & Uwe Tobias

© Gert & Uwe Tobias