Monday, February 18, 2013

Playing with monoprints

In my studio last month I explored printing with some plants from my garden - a perennial silver bush (unable to be identified) and the flower heads from my Italian Parsley.

It wasn't a complex printing session, but just a relaxing exploration of a couple of plants I wanted to try before I did some garden trimming.

The flower heads were rather thick and juicy, so I first ran one through the press with butchers paper to get rid of some of the excess moisture.  I then printed with it - the first print is show below.  The green colour is actually from the plant not from ink, it still had plenty of liquid, staining the paper. 

The first print

The second print (the ghost print) captured the delicate structure of the flower head.  As the plant was so fresh, it fell apart as I removed it from the plate.  I had to use the tweezers to methodically pick off the individual soft seeds that stuck to the plate....a zen moment requiring much care and patience!

The second print

The third print was used as a base for another print, using a paper mask to highlight the flower head image, which was much fainter at this stage.
The third print

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Encaustic Artist Book Explorations

These photos are some encaustic panels I've been working on.   The panels are plywood, with layers of monoprints and decorative papers, using encaustic wax, oil paints and shellac.  The image transfers are my drawings of ginkgo leaves.

I find the process is similar to monoprinting where I work intuitively and compose my work as I progress. Great fun!  Lots of danger (hot wax, heat gun), working quickly and problem solving to make them work.  And if I don't like it, I just melt it off with the heat gun...easy! 

I plan to join the panels together into a simple concertina book structure.  I made a couple of these books last year, and loved them, so I felt the need to explore the medium further using the ginkgo leaf as my inspiration.