Friday, February 3, 2012

Set-up for printing a collagraph

Work table ready for printing a collagraph. This is one way to lay it out, there are many other ways. In this case the work flow is from right to left but it could just as well be left to right.

Clockwise from top right:
Inks -- several tubes of ink in different colours.
Glass plate for mixing and rolling inks.
The collagraph block -- various things glued to a piece of cardboard. Ink will be rolled over it while it's on the newspaper, then it will be moved to the printing area.
A board -- this is an old canvas board that I use for printing. It has registration strips or guides securely glued on. When ready to print I put a sheet of the printing paper up against the strips and then glue it to the board. Then I center the printing block on the paper and mark the outline in pencil. This helps to get the block in the right place after each inking.
A baren -- for pressing on the back of the paper to transfer the ink from the block.
Brayers (2) -- small rubber rollers for rolling out the ink and inking the block.


Mark said...

Never tried a collograph - just looked it up on google. Loks interesting. I used to use monoprints a lot, often a s a precursor to painting.

See this for a video of my old tutor talking - typical John, notions and fully formed ideas all intermingled. He has some superb insights though, I think. There is second video of him talking on the site too.

Mary said...

Thanks Mark, I did enjoy that!

Eileen said...

I do enjoy these practical posts Mary. They demystify the process and help others (like me) to see how they might try the same thing. I enoyed Mark's link also - a very interesting discussion that resonates with me particularly just now - I have been doing some sereis of related works, and pondering on how difficult it is to keep the continuity of idea and interest without ending up just repeating yourself.

Catherine said...

Like Mark, I looked it up. It's good to see everything laid out ready and I'm anticipating that you'll be showing the actual print. I might have got the wrong end of the stick here, but a friend of mine layers various materials and then places them on the scanner. Presumably this is a digital approximation/paler imitation of the collograph which will have that richness of paint texture.

Susanna Lambeck said...

Thanks, Mary, great insight, am about to try printmaking with my kids class and found your photo very helpful!

Mary said...

Hi Eileen -- agree with you about working in series, I find the momentum tends to falter after about four and I found the series of six in both Level 3 courses was too much and they got boring and forced. What appeals to me more is not a series but a body of work composed of related pieces which goes on until the well runs dry, whenever that happens.

Mary said...

Thanks for commenting Catherine - what you describe does sound like more of a digital process -- is it called a collagraph also? There's some confusion about the terms, I'm using it in the sense that's generally understood today but some people say "collatype". Then there's chine colle, which I don't quite understand yet (it's the next chapter in the book) -- it involves "collaging" thin papers onto a print. Printmaking has lots of issues with terminology, even the term "print" is a problem because people see it as any old reproduction and don't realise that a collagraph or linocut is an original work of art. Whole new vocab needed but who will give way?!


P.S. Didn't like the print too much so it probably won't appear here.

Mary said...

Hi Susanne, glad it was useful. I've seen some good stuff on the web about printmaking in the classroom, will look for some links for you. Your website and new art school look fabulous, congratulations and very best wishes for success.