Wednesday, 25 January 2012

More things to do

7. The City - Having lived in London and Brighton and seen all the visual spectacle they have to offer, I would love to get back in to the grimy magnificence of the metropolis and do some cityscapes. 

It has of course to be a megopolis, London, Birmingham definitely New York ( Any invites gratefully received ).. Below a print of the outskirts of Cardiff I produced for a series the 'Taff Trial.' I really enjoyed playing with the pattern and abstracted shapes in the tower block. Really whet my appetite for a bit more hot tower on tarmac action..

Llandaff North. Cardiff

 8. The Meaning of Landscape - A bit more intellectual and long term this one. What makes certain landscapes special, what attaches a meaning to a piece of ground, what is it that makes part of the  'landscape' a 'view' therefore special and so worth preserving or just ground of no consequence. Is the appearance of the land importance or its connection to those who associate with it. How does a completely false man made landscape (Most of the countryside in the UK ) become the symbol of all things 'natural'  and something to be protected against mans perfidious interference? Aspects of memory, history, personal  involvement. How different cultures see their relationship with the land on which they live. An investigative path that will have to include the indigenous arts of Australasia, having as they do a completely different take on the meaning of the landscape.

9. Play Misty for me - Moving away from the crisp clear lines I am partial to and look at suggestion, hint, half seen and obscure. Experiment with more ephemeral prints aiming to capture the appearance, or not, of mist, a landscape glimpsed through heavy rain, evening light and other obscurities.

10. Multi Block - A step on from reduction print? having a go at prints in whichb I can play with the things that cannot be done on a single chunk of lino. Playing with texture, being able to cut continous lines and patterns and then overlay more pattern and areas of texture without worrying about the restrictions of the previous or following layers.

As previously mentioned I have cut out the keyblock for my first multiblock. Typically I couldn't have a go at a test A4 print, oh no I've cut out an A2 multi that will need at least four sheets.

Offsetting the key onto the transfer sheet

11. Outside broadcast - Take the lino block outside and draw directly onto the block to hopefully keep the loose quality of the draw line. Avoids the deadening effect on the spontaneous drawn line of tracing the image from sketch to block. There is of course the reversing of the image through direct printing, so the subject matter must be something that is not affected by orientation. Just a great composition of a simple image.

12. Portrait - An attempt at expressive portraits, looking at old black and white images of tribal societies, reference books on tattoo portraits, criminal mugshots. Old staged photo's from the early days of photography. Or, as here, a print from the early days of my printmaking:



Monday, 9 January 2012

In with the new.

A Happy New 2012 to all printmakers,

After finishing the old year by showing an unfinished print, the last of my Chough suite, I better start this new year by showing the finished article, with the final black keyline over the top. I nice end to the three prints around the common Chough theme. They worked well together, which sent me back thinking about triptychs, quatrychs, triptych spreads and even a temporal triptych.

I have just realised I have shown the beginning and the end but not the middle. So here is the middle of the Chough. Print number two:

As with the other two, a bit of experimentation with printing the sky. Which I will look at in more detail when I show the layer breakdown.

No New Year printmaker resolutions as such then, just a very keen desire to get a move on and try out some of that stuff really. As well as the Multiblock keyline cut I showed last post sitting resplendent in my new registration block, ( Still clean shiny and unused) So like the stuff inspired by the Chough suite I have a whole list of things I have been scribbling in my little black book of scribbles ' n ' things.

I need to get on and start something because the longer I leave it the longer the list grows as one idea leads to another. A bit like this blog really.

Heres a quick list of some of the scribbles, for action in 2012 :

1. Temporal Triptych - Little idea I had after doing my 'Llyn movement in the movement' research, [ Oho yet another story to catch up on, I got a Arts Council Wales grant and everything for that one which dealt with trying to work out how to show movement in the essentially static carved medium of Lino.]  So a triptych is a scene spread through three images, my temporal triptych would aim to show the same scene spread though three images showing how the scene changed over time. Thinking mainly waves crashing on rocks. As the form of both the wave and the rock seem to change drastically as the fluid form of the one wraps around the solid shape of the other.

2. Triptych spread -  More of your standard trippie here. A wide long view divided up across three separate prints which and, heres the rub, must work dramatically and compositionally as individual units but then fit together to display as one. Got a whole lot of ideas here to do with shorelines, lakes etc.

3. Quatrych - Is there such a thing, similar to the Triptych but rather than three in a line with this fella you have four arranged in a square, so it really is just a scene enlarged to be huge and then printed in four smaller pieces to be manageable. Nothing special here really other than just wanting to see four prints arranged together to make up a whopper. Which leads to:

4. A Whopper - Same kind of scale as the above, but in one large print. A1 even A0 size, and for further dramatic effect feel that something so big must have a contrastingly simple and bold subject matter. Almost abstract. Like a single boulder and wave, or lone sheep, something like that. So I can really lose myself and get carried away cutting texture and pattern within a very simple form.

5. Expressionist - ( direct from notebook ) "More emotive expressive picture, Hand drawn direct on to the block, very scribbly and loose - drawn with big permanent marker - simple subjects. Black dog -  rough landscape." By black dog I do both mean an actual black dog and the symbolic 'Black dog' which represents depression and ultimately death and is often reported by those suffering from, initially, one and worried about the other. A dog that I have seen on one very strange occasion!

6. Story - A longer term project is that of telling a tale, a story through a consecutive series of prints. Initial ideas lean towards the biblical, as all good lapsed catholics tend to, fairy tale, same thing really, biographical, more fairy stories or an updating and development of these images my 'American Series.' Seen here in the light of a virtual day for the very first time. They have been sleeping at the bottom of every folder, file or plan chest in which I store my work since their creation over a decade ago. Back in the day when most of my work was figurative and before my 'escape to Wales'

"Strange Fruit" American 5

"Daily Bread" American 10

"X" American 11

They started as a wee rant against the USification of culture through good ole telly and the assumption we have in the UK of a complete knowledge of, and understanding about, America purely through its depiction on UK television, American film and the media.  I had a huge list of things I 'knew' about America, a collection of even bigger assumptions and newspaper clippings of the more extreme examples of American happenings.  I then starting to arrange them into a series of prints from the view point of a Brit impression of life in the US. Generally as accurate as thinking that all the English either live in Castles with butlers or are cockney geezers.

Each composition or layout was based on a classic painting, print or drawing and I tried to link each consecutive print by having a background detail become the subject for the following print. Or the main subject become the background detail of the following print.

Never did finish the whole series, but  finished enough to get shortlisted for a years residency in Roswell Artist in Residence, New Mexico. Maybe I'll come back to them and start again, maybe I will move on to something I have knocking about at the back of my head.  A new series based on the life and exciting times of Saint Bonaduce  ( Bon - a - juicy ) the first gay saint. Mainly because I want to have a go at some of the richness of religious imagery, contempory icons and use a whole load of gold leaf! May even build a saint out of brambles. Oooh the pain of thorns, the agony... It will be a multimedia extravaganza!