"The artist...is also a born adventurer. His explorations, unlike those of a tourist, are rewarded by the discovery of beauty spots unmentioned in the guide books, and with tireless curiosity and an exceptional proneness to wonderment, he will come upon objects of remarkable interest overlooked or even shunned by more disciplined observers."

Augustus John, R.A.




Sunday, 31 January 2016

Barn Owl Print

Finally finished the Barn Owl print with the addition of the final dark just to bring out the foreground detail.


The block inked for the final time.

and the finished print.



Summer Dusk
Reduction Linocut.
250mm x 362mm
Edition of 8 prints.

To recap, there are 23 colours on this print inked up and printed in 11 stages as below:

Stage 1. A blend of orange and 3 shades of yellow.
Stage 2. A light blue printed on its own for the small patch of blue sky.
Stage 3. A blend of 3 shades of grey and yellow ochre.
Stage 4. A darker yellow ochre on the Owl only.
Stage 5. A darker tone of the yellow ochre above again on the Owl only.
Stage 6. A blue grey on the Owl only.
Stage 7. A blend of blue grey, light brown and light green.
Stages 8 and 9. Progressively darker shades of the above blend.
Stage 10. A blend of blue grey and green.
Stage 11. Final darker darker blend of the Stage 10 colours.

The print can be purchased by following the link on the right to my Folksy shop or here

Sunday, 24 January 2016

Next steps on the new print.

After a weeks work there are big changes in the way the print is looking. To start off I decided to work on the Owl before continuing with the landscape.


The 4th stage colour is a yellow ochre.


Rolled on the block I then carefully wiped away any ink from the area around the Owl.


Printed it starts to give definition to the bird.


The 5th stage is darker tone of the same colour.


Again I carefully wiped any stray ink from the block before printing.


and the Owl starts to appear from the background.


 The 6th stage is a blue grey colour to bring out the plumage details.



Rolled on the block and it can be seen that not much material remains on the Owl.


and printed.


With the owl more or less finished apart from dropping in a final dark for its eye. It's time to turn back to the landscape. The 7th stage is another blend.


The ink rolled out gives an indication of how the block has been cut.


The difficulty now is to maintain the atmosphere of the print.


After more cutting Stage 8 is a two colour blend.


On the block a big area in the centre has been removed.


and printed. The next colour changes need to be quite subtle to maintain the dusky atmosphere.


Stage 9. Two colours, a darker blue grey and a dark brown for the wheatfield. The small blob of ink floating around on its own to the right of where the Owl was will drop the dark colour on to its eye.



Printed and we are nearing the end. Only a couple more stages to go.


Stage 10. Two more colours, another dark grey and a dark green.


Not much lino left now.


After printing only a final dark colour to go now.

Sunday, 17 January 2016

First steps on a new print

The start of a new and quite complicated print. The sequence shows the results of the first few days work.


The block cut and ready to be inked with the first colour,


which will be a blend of four shades of yellow.


Rolled out


and the block inked, which gives an indication of how little has been cut from it at this stage.


The first colours printed.


Next is a pale blue


but only in a small and discrete part of the block so all I've cut so far is the area immediately around the patch of blue. There will be a lot of cutting to do after this has been printed before the next big block of colour can go down.


The blue printed.


After the next colour, another blend, this time three greys and a darker yellow ochre.


The inked block shows how much material has been removed since printing the blue. Hopefully this blend of cool greys over the yellow and orange will set the atmosphere for the print.


And printed. So far we have nine colours printed in 3 stages. The sky is now finished so the next step is to remove all of the material above the horizon line before deciding what to do next. The Owl is positioned such that once this has been done, I can work on it without having to ink any other part of the block. It needs to have a couple more colours to define it's plumage properly; a darker yellow ochre and a dark blue grey. So I may do this next before continuing to work the landscape.

Saturday, 16 January 2016

First print of the new year


Rain at the Grey Mares Tail
18 colour Reduction Linocut, printed as two and three colour blends in 7 stages.
243mm x 137mm
Edition of 10 prints

The first print completed this year, a smallish linocut based on an old wtercolour sketch. The challenge with this one being to capture the atmosphere of a rainy day in the Scottish Borders. Newly posted on my Folksy shop it can be purchased by following the link on the right or by clicking here

Sunday, 3 January 2016

Last Print of the Old Year


Ingleborough from the South West
17 colour reduction linocut printed in 9 stages
252mm x 342mm
Edition of 10

The final print of 2015, completed just before New Years Eve.

Sunday, 15 November 2015

Wild Wet and Windy at Malham

Just got back home after spending a very enjoyable weekend at the Malham Tarn field centre teaching a linocut workshop for the Field Studies Council. The weather was a little wild to say the least; gales, floods and hail. But unlike the 6th form students who were also at the centre we didn't have to go out in it and study geography, other than to walk up to the bar in the evening. It's a bit of a big ask to produce a multi-colour linocut in two days considering I take around two weeks to make mine. But after some intensive work we managed to create some really good work. We printed flat colours, blended rolls and did some pretty complicated cutting. Each student printed editions of 10 and of the fifty odd prints created only around five or six were lost to mis-registration which is a better average than I manage sometimes.


Christina's sunset scene inspired by the view from her home in Richmondshire.



Lynne's lovely sunlit scene of a beach on Iona.



Liz's wonderfully atmospheric sunlit sheep on the top of Malham Cove.



Sue's skilful use of blends created this print in just 3 stages.



Marie's frog leaping from his Escher inspired ripples, who also found time to do a little mono-printing. I certainly had a good time in wonderful company and I hope everyone else did too.

Monday, 9 November 2015

Sgurr an Fheadain


Sgurr an Fheadain
Mezzotint
200mm x 150mm

Finally started to edition this mezzotint. Decided to print with a blend of Prussian blue and green rather than just black and really pleased with the atmosphere in the print. Its a slow process though, after 3 hours of inking, wiping and printing  I have 8 prints nicely drying off. I'm not sure of the edition size yet though as I don't know how many prints I will get before the plate starts to degrade.