The studio may be shut this month but it is a good time to review my recent work and plan for the next few months ahead. During the year there are many drawing and print competition to try for and hope that work will be selected. I currently have a lino cut in a travelling exhibition in the Midlands through the Leicester Print Workshop’s Smallprint competition.
Sometimes it can feel a bit like a lottery but if choosing selectively it can also provide targets to focus on. It is important to select exhibitions and competitions that allow you to still keep a primary focus on your own practise rather than just trying new ideas to fit someone else’s criteria.
I have recently been making work for the Printmaker’s Council Miniprint competition. This is providing me with considerably opportunity to hone my techniques in screen printing which I have only been learning over the last few months. They require prints that are no larger than 8cm x 10cm. At this size registration becomes very important as there is very little margin for error.
It does have the advantage though that the screens can be small and printing is quicker, so I have been able to try out a number of ideas in a short period of time. All print techniques have their own demands and preparation and practise are the keys to success. So often all we see are the final finished prints that make everything look to effortless. Oh so far from the truth, hiding the hours just working away trying to get anything to come out as you want.
So in a spirit of honesty I thought I would show some of the many failures that have been occurring while trying to make these prints. They are improving and with a little more work I think I will have my entries ready by mid September – watch this space.
|Colours bleeding out under the screen while printing|
|A very uneven print on the background, flat areas can be hard to get even|
|What happens when you forget which way round your image is.|