Daffodils, Dragonflies and Fritillaries

Dragonflies & Fritillaria

Dragonflies & Fritillaria ii 12 x 12

Dragonflies & Daffodils  10 x 10

Now my essay has been handed in, I am enjoying getting back to printing again.  Focusing on the drypoints and using Stella Ross Craig’s botanical drawings as a reference I am developing my little magical worlds of insects, bulbs, roots, petals, stamens etc.  The first drypoint is finished but the bottom two are at the first stage.  I drew the faint daffodils directly from nature and I realised that I hadn’t pressed hard enough.  Still, having added new imagery, I rather like the difference in line tone.  We will have to wait and see how it progresses.  I only have a few days left until this semester finishes.  Portfolio hand in on Monday!  Barry arrives in the UK on Wednesday! 

Introducing colour

This week I tried introducing colour to my drypoints using ‘simultaneous colour printing’ or the viscosity printing method, largely developed by Stanley William Hayter.  This is a method of introducing layers of colour onto one plate.   What I did learn was that it isn’t as easy as our wonderful technicians make it look!  It is a process of using layers of colour on one plate, by changing the viscosity of the etching inks by adding copper plate oil.  The roller needs to be wide enough in diameter to make one sweep across the plate.  I did not manage this and that’s why the colour is uneven.  However, there are no hard and fast rules and I think it’s a very exciting process for those wanting to use colour and maybe after a lot of practice I might get somewhere!

Here are some new drypoints in progress.

Primrose, Bird’s-Eye Primrose, bees, pollen, petals, roots – 25 x 25 cm
In a whirl
Close up of In a whirl
Rolling out the ink – good arm exercise as it took me a while to get it even!
After laying down of the ink onto the plate it is placed on the press (note: I did not mess up the blankets!)
First In a whirl with colour

Latest Drypoint – in progress

Here are the first three stages of my latest drypoint.  I have continued working from Stella Ross-Craig’s beautiful drawings of British plants, adding bees, and petals, roots and pollen.  Of course it will continue to evolve I am sure, but I hope you enjoy seeing the progress so far.

Oxlip – first print
Oxlip – second print
Oxlip – third print