I’ve been working on my beach scapes after my day at Cronulla. Whilst the photos aren’t bad, and I’ve picked up some interesting small features, my drawings reflect exactly what I’ve seen and I’m not terribly inspired by them. Whilst working on my theme (blog post here) I identified land and seascapes as an area I hadn’t covered in my work to date and thought it would be something I’d like to follow. I now find that it’s evolving into something a little less obvious as ‘realism’ and progressing more into the realms of abstraction. Yesterday, whilst continuing to work on my designs, I had a printing day with my OCA colleague and friend, Judy, where we explored layering shapes and colours.
I gave her 2 base plates to work with, both the same size – a piece of lino and a piece of foamex board. The design criteria I supplied was as follows:
- The foamex board was to be the first print layer and would be marked and coloured individually for each print in colours she chose, in selected areas she chose.
- The foamex was to be marked with straight lines: a certain number were initially to be drawn starting and finishing on the edges of the board but must not cross each other. This was followed by a further specified number of lines that could start and finish at any point but must cross at least one of the previous set.
- She could add texture or cutting within any of the resulting marked sections.
- The lino was to be marked with a specified number of circles, overlapping, any size, complete or partially outside the lino.
- Areas of the circles and surrounds were to be selected to remove so the foamex patterning would show through.
I started by making her a simple jig. I cut double corrugated cardboard to size and added a further layer as the ‘L’ corner for paper alignment. An aperture was cut to allow the lino and foamex to sit in place for accurate registration. This is a good registration method as it is quick to make and doesn’t create any marks or indentations on paper when it is situated correctly.
As the cardboard was quite thick I had to cut some inserts for the aperture to raise the lino above the surface. I used more of the cardboard, which I knew would compress, and some mount board offcuts.
Here are her print results:
During the day we discussed our individual OCA courses, our goals, deadlines, what we hope to achieve and the directions we want to go and I realised that I’d had a really fun time. It reminded me that I should be having fun days every day and not doing things for my course that I think I should be doing but rather doing the things I want to do (a recurring mantra).
After Judy had left I sat and thought for a while:
For project 15 do I want to produce a scenic view that is fine but not exciting me much?
Should I push myself to produce something that is extremely outside my area of interest?
Is it a valid and worthwhile learning experience to select a subject matter that doesn’t entice me?
My conclusions were that everything I do, or try, is worthwhile and works towards my development. However, understanding my personal preferences and evolving my own visual outcomes is equally important. So I’ve decided to go with aspects of my photos but juggle them around into my own format – which may not end up resembling scenery, land, sea or urban scapes at all.
Love the prints! I like where your thinking is going, too; it really resonates with me. I find series only work if I am interested and engaged with a particular topic and find my personal motif or visual structure that represents or expresses that theme to me. Otherwise it’s just tedious.
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Thanks for a great day Claire. Lots of fun and lots of learning. My post about it is https://fibresofbeing.wordpress.com/2015/12/31/t1-mmt-p4-printing-workshop-with-claire-brach/.
It’s good to see your thoughts evolving – I’m looking forward to seeing where your current series goes.