I’m quite fond of Sepia, the warmth and depth of the colour attracts me. So this project has initially been printed using this.
These prints are much nicer in the hand than photographed. Both are on lightweight paper and both images seem to fuse nicely with the paper base. I was very careful how much ink I applied and the soft transfer is very attractive. All the marks are visible with the exception of the sandpaper scratching on the bottom left. However the jewellery file scratching in the same place has produced fine random line-work.
Above left: approx 65-70% sepia + 30-35% extender on Arches 88. I increased the level of pigment to see if a more definite transfer is possible with some of these shallow markings. It’s worked quite well but already some of the fine shallow marks are filling with ink and becoming less visible (top row – third from left, middle row – right, bottom row – left).
Above right: A new experiment, on elephant dung paper. I wanted to make a colour variation by adding yellow to the existing sepia blend. My oil based inks only have a Hansa yellow light in the range which is a cool lemon and I was after a warmer colour. So I picked up a Windsor & Newton oil colour which I understand is a paint not an ink. I’ve successfully mixed it with oil inks in the past but never laid it out alone and tried to create a variegated effect using it alongside oil inks.
As you can see from the sample above, it really didn’t want to blend well with the original colour. I simply laid it out on top of one end of the remaining ink from previous prints and rolled back and forth. The print shows a clear muddy line where the oil ink wouldn’t spread and merge with the yellow. However, the cuts and marks on the lino still came up quite well using this lighter colour.
Above left: Arches 88. The best print I think. Good colour mix, clear imagery in most areas although there is an ink build-up in a couple of places, and a sharp outline. Right: Kozo extra heavy paper. What the heck is that line imprint going right across the bottom third? It’s faintly visible in the previous print as well. I have no idea what caused this.
I think I’ll run a couple more prints in a different colour to compare results..
Below is the second block I cut. From the top down the sections are: etching with a hot soldering iron, scratching with a wire brush and jewellery file, scratching with a needle nose jewellery file, drawing circles with styluses, drawing with the end of a metal shim brayer.
Both samples are on Kozo extra heavy paper. Wow, the soldering iron squiggles are wonderful. The tool melted the lino and forced the material to the surface creating mounds alongside the cut lines. I then brushed off the excess loose shavings and left the remainder in place. So the surface was incredibly uneven. The ink managed to attach to the surface lumps and somehow to the surrounding flat surface as well even though it is marginally recessed. Unexpected and superb result.
Some of the other marks on this piece haven’t come out well at all and others are only apparent when you look very carefully, as can be understood from my close-up photo.
Very interesting and a lot of fun. Time to try my other tools now.