Not quite printing

I’ve really enjoyed the back-drawing in particular during the latter parts of my course assignment.  This brought to mind the idea of brass rubbing.  I took my oil pastel dye sticks and some calico and tried some rubbings.  The first thing I encountered was how hard it is to hold fabric taut whilst transferring images and how different rubbing plates gave different results.

Plate-rubbingCedar Canyon plastic rubbing plate – one transfer, single colour, cloth movement in one area.

Plate-rubbing-2Cedar Canyon plastic rubbing plate – one transfer, three colours, slight cloth movement creating blurred image.

Plate-rubbing-1Cedar Canyon plastic rubbing plate – two layers.  First transfer in green, plate was turned over and the negative image was transferred in brown and yellow.

Plate-rubbing-3Cedar Canyon plastic rubbing plate – three layers.  First transfer in blue, second transfer with the plate moved only marginally using green & turquoise, third transfer with the plate turned using yellow overlaid with a light touch of green.

Soft-sculp-rubbingCarved Soft-sculp block.  Left with single colour and fabric held very taut, right using two colours and with slight movement of calico.

Stencil-rubbingRubbing over a flat metal stencil.  This should have been taped to the table around the stencil to stop movement as it was hard to keep it tight and there was substantial slippage.

Stencil-rubbing-1Rubbing over a thick acetate stencil.

Thermoplast-foam-rubbingI heated thermoplast foam, indented it using a rubber mold and left it to cool before taking the rubbing.

The main thing when transferring images using this method is to ensure that the fabric is stretched as tightly as possible if a clean edged transfer is required.  It would probably work well with paper as that wouldn’t have the tendency to sag into the lower portions of the molds.

I’ve seen some excellent results on wearables using coloured silk fabric as the base and Markel Shiva sticks to create the rubbing.  Not very exciting on cream calico but good for trials.


About Claire B

I'm a passionate printmaker, paper-maker and a poor sketcher (which I'm working to improve). I've stitched from early childhood and am a perpetual student, loving learning and participating in everything creative.
This entry was posted in My Creative Pieces, Print 1: Experimentation, Printmaking 1 and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Not quite printing

  1. Nola says:

    I quite like the softness you get from the movement of the fabric. You can tape it to a cardboard frame or similar, which gives a lot more control. I quite like the idea of using wax crayon or oilstiks as a rubbing resist and then overdyeing…

    • Claire B says:

      Oh yes, I like that idea too. Something to work on there, I can see.
      I’m currently stitching on some small fabric pieces that I marbled a while ago. They’re coming along beautifully. I seem to have several swap challenges that call for small samplers and these printed, back-drawn, transfer rubbed, dyed and marbled fabrics are just the thing. They lend themselves to random stitching and surface embellishment.

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