Monday, June 29, 2009

This was the day

On the sports news today they announced that today, June 29th, was the day when the West Indies first beat England, at Lord's, back in 1950. My husband remembers exactly where he was at the moment when he heard the news. He was walking down Frederick Street in Port of Spain and it was on a ticker at W.C. Ross. That tells you what it meant to people. I've just looked up the famous match on Cricinfo, and thanks to them (what a fabulous website) we were able to reminisce over the "three W's" (Walcott, Weekes and Worrell) and get the actual batting and bowling figures. Alf Valentine took eight wickets in the first innings of the first match earlier in June.

Here he is . . . from

And an obituary in the New York Times in 2004 recalling the famous calypso by Lord Beginner inspired by the victory, "Those two little pals of mine, Ramadhin and Valentine".

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

More monoprinting

Click to enlarge

These are all oil-based ink. The one on the left is from a drawing done in 2002 (here). It's back-drawn over another monoprint from yesterday. The one in the middle is a painted monoprint from life, and the seated figure on the right is based on a painting done in 2004 (here). It nearly came out well but unfortunately the paper slipped while rubbing the back of the print. I'm discovering the endless permutations of monoprinting -- taking the first print and then a ghost because there's still some ink on the plate. Then there's the leftover ink on the side, might as well use that up, so add to the plate and go again. Dud prints can be used as the basis for later prints, or torn up and used for collage, so nothing is wasted.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Monoprint experiments

Today I took a break from painting and had some fun experimenting with monoprinting. I used acrylic screenprinting ink which is quick and easy to use and to clean up, but harder to control on the plate than oil-based inks. The plate was a nice thick piece of glass with polished edges and I have a stack of old blank letterheads for taking trial prints. On the downside, I found that an image which looks bright and vivid on the plate may lose some of its vitality on paper. But overall it's a great way to explore the formal aspects of making art. Plus, these are very amateurish efforts, I have a ways to go to get one good print.

Amendment, Sunday June 7, 2009:

Is it "monoprint" or "monotype"? The terms are often used interchangeably but the purists prefer "monotype". Here's what says:

"The two terms monotype and monoprint are often confused and need clarification. A monoprint is a print created through any technique (lithograph, etching, woodblock, etc.) that is altered after it has been printed. Each print is different from the other, as the artist works each etched or worked plate individually, adding color or wiping the ink differently each time a print is pulled. A monotype is the printing of an image from a clean, unworked surface containting no scratching, carving or drawing. The main difference is that with monotypes editions are impossible to pull.

The distinction between monotype and monoprint is relatively new, however, dating back only to 1978 when it was introduced by exhibition curator Jane Farmer (info from History of the Monotype by William Jung).