"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, 30 January 2011

4th Colour

The fourth colour is down with no hiccups, 3 more to go I think. Next colour will be two small areas of red for the rose hips. This should be finished this week then I can begin printing the next block. Unusually, I have three prints at various stages of development, all on the go at once.

Wednesday, 26 January 2011

Third Colour

With all of the blue removed, and the third colour printed to establish the base colour of the branches. Just how much of the block has been removed becomes apparent. From now on only small areas remain to be printed. There is very little room for error and the registration has to be spot on. But with some careful baren work the printing wasn't as difficult as I'd imagined. (Touch wood!)

Next colour will be a light green for the grasses down the left hand side and a few leaves poking through the snow.

Ideas for prints and designs I want to work on are coming thick and fast. As well as this print, I have another block already carved to print the first colour once this one is finished. Another print I have at the design stage may be a bit ambitious. The subject is one I keep returning to in other media but haven't tried as a print. What I want to do may be a bit too subtle for a linocut. We'll have to wait and see.

Monday, 24 January 2011

Second Colour

If I really knew what I was doing I would have thought about this before diving in head first. It was only after I had carved away all the first colour, that I realised just how difficult I had made things. With so much of the block gone, there was very little left inked up to hold the paper. Not so much of a problem if I was using a press, but rubbing with a baren there was always the chance of the paper slipping. Anyway with some careful printing so far so good.

Sunday, 23 January 2011

Jumping on the Snow bandwagon

Its that time of the year, so here is my offering.

After what turned out to be quite a lot of carving I printed the first colour. Another five or so to go.

Sunday, 16 January 2011


Oystercatcher at Winscar Reservoir.
Reduction Linocut (9 Colours). 190mm x 170mm. Edition of 6.

Finished the Oystercatcher print for the 2009 Huddersfield Bird Report Cover, and delivered it on the promised date. For a change I managed to print the entire edition without any registration problems. Started out with 6 sheets of paper and finished with 6 prints.

Sunday, 9 January 2011

Eight Colours down- One to go

Printed the main blue for the dark plumage of the Oystercatcher and so far so good. Only the final dark to go now. I know most printmakers, when asked in interviews will say that cleaning up is the thing they hate most about the process. I quite enjoy cleaning up between colours, it gives me time to think and plan the next move. For me, I find printing the final colour the worst part. With a reduction print so much depends on getting the last printing right. Get it wrong and there is no recovery.

Monday, 3 January 2011

Oystercatcher, progress on the next 3 colours.

Colours 5,6 and 7. Although the light green printed as colour 6 is out of order. I should have printed it as colour 4. Hopefully it will still work out.

Only two colours to go now to fill in the black plumage of the bird, so it should be complete by the end of the week. Then I can go back and finish off the trawler print.

Sunday, 2 January 2011

Happy New Year

Two days in Scotland for the New Year and a couple of sketches.

A frozen Loch of the Lowes in Selkirkshire. Quite a contrast from the atmosphere of what is essentially the same view that I drew on 31st August last Summer. The loch was almost completely frozen over apart from a short patch of clear water near the shoreline.

and a male Brambling feeding in my brothers garden with a mixed flock of Chaffinches, Siskins and House Sparrows.