Sunday, 26 May 2013

On the importance of paper

I got all happy today when I thought that I'd finished the last image and was ready to start printing and assembling a model book. (This is so I can see how it fits together and hopefully getting all the mistakes out the way before making the real thing with expensive paper.)

Then I realised I was missing a W. Somehow it didn't appear it my alphabet list. Arses.

LC suggested W for Winston (Churchill), but I might go with W for Waterloo(Sunset.)

Still, I started to print the model without a W, as time is running out.

Novel use of clothes drier.
I also started to make some proofs from the lovely paper sent to me by paper maestros, John Purcell. This is a fantastic service, you can call them or email them with your requirements and they will send you some sample paper to print with before you commit to one type. They sent a lovely generous parcel of papers and I had fun trying them out. I asked them for something sturdy to make a book with that people could handle, but that would be okay for printing by hand without a press.  You can see some of the results below.

Some of them picked up the ink smoothly, some of them  needed a lot more pressure. It's finding a balance between something that looks and feels nice, and is relatively heavy, and something that prints cleanly without too much of the whiteness of the paper showing through. Onwards and upwards.

Thursday, 16 May 2013

U for Urban Fox

U is for Urban Fox

It was going to be U for UCL, and I was going to do Jeremy Bentham's autoicon, but then I thought, would I rather have a picture in my book of a dead man in a box or a beautiful animal?

This fox is in Malet Street, surveying the snow. 

Sunday, 12 May 2013

100 Club, Ronnie Scott's, Parliament and Soho

R for Ronnie Scott's

P for Parliament

H for 100 Club

These are all rough proofs (very rough) and all need serious  fixing. It used to say "Live Girls" under S for Soho but it didn't really add anything so I'm going to take it out. Now fixed.

I have printmaker's arm-ache 7 to go, the end is in sight. Then begins the fun of turning it into a book.

Wednesday, 8 May 2013

T and V


V for V & A

The print isn't blurry, it's just my cameraphone. (When I know how to make a linocut look out of focus, I will be a master printmaker.)

T for Thames

I am pleased with this mudlark. Sometimes it is more satisfying when it's harder because you work and rework something until you're happy with it. This took a long time before the water didn't overwhelm it and make the image hard to read.

It's interesting, the reasons for making an image can be expedient - I knew T had to be for the Thames, and boats are too difficult... Also I couldn't wait to have a go at the water. Not as easy as it looks. I'm pleased with the bird though. Originally a seagull, now I'm not so sure. 

Sunday, 5 May 2013


Q for Queens
It was going to be Queers, but I'm not sure if I'm allowed to use this.  Queens is a bit more neutral.

Still not contented with this one, after lots of reworking and proof printing. There comes a time when you have to stop working on it, or you will cut it until you're left with just a little pile of lino shavings.

C is for Coffee Bar

C is for Coffee Bar
For some reason, this one took the longest and went through many changes. I wanted it to look like the first generation of coffee bars in the fifties/sixties, but I don't know if this comes across.