Wednesday, 13 June 2018

More Collagraph Printing.

 Using the plate that I made with local weeds in flower, I tried it out on two different types of paper.
The one above is on proper printing paper in a lovely creamy yellow colour. The dark patch in the middle is a little over inked, or under cleaned, so I'm not entirely happy with this print.
This one is on a piece of Watercolour paper that is a bright white in colour. There is more definition in the foliage, and plenty of contrast with lights and darks,  so it might be the best one. I do like the cream paper better though!

Sunday, 10 June 2018

Further Collagraph Printing

 I made these plates a little while ago, but because of the time needed for setting up of the equipment, the rubbing back and actual printing, I haven't had time until today. Above is a 2 colour print which is moderately successful, given that I printed the whole plate in one go, rather than the colours separately.
                                                  The same plate printed in monochrome.
This is the better part of another larger late that definitely didn't work well. The ink was still too thick in some places and rather smudgy in others. It really is a demanding process that I haven't as yet even begun to master!

Saturday, 9 June 2018

Gelatine Plate Prints.

 Having managed to break my new gelatine plate in half as I took it out of the tin, I had to microwave all the cut up pieces and reset it. It shouldn't have broken with glycerine and isopropyl alcohol in it, but it did. I managed to do a few prints this afternoon, none that I'm really thrilled by, but I might cut them up anyway. Above is just a local weed that I pressed flat a couple of months ago.
 Leaves and stems creeper of  with small leaves that I pressed before it dropped it's leaves for Autumn.
                            I'm not sure what these pressed leaves are, a Bottlebrush perhaps.
A Japanese Maple variety with lovely fine leaves. I really like these leaves and will probably use them again.

Tuesday, 5 June 2018

The gelatine Plate.

 I made up my old gelatine plate a long time ago, maybe more than a year ago, so it wasn't surprising that it started to become less than a good printing surface. Although these signs of mould were on the underneath of the plate, it wasn't long before the upper surface started to go dark brown and to be too dry to use for gelatine prints.
 I just left it in the tin while I went on to something else, and it eventually dried out completely, resulting in this plate of hard brittle gelatine with the remnants of pain still in it.
 I'm sure that I could have broken it up, added water and warmed to useable consistency again, but rather than waste time, I made up a lovely new plate instead.

Here is the new plate poured into the old tin that I scrubbed up for re-use. There are a couple of pin prick faults in it, but I'm sure that it'll be fine for the sorts of printed backgrounds that I want to make. At 21 cm x 30 cm it's a lot bigger than the commercial Gel plates, that is if you don't want to spend a fortune on a large plate..

Monday, 4 June 2018

All Gone!

This is all that remains of the first 3 raised and covered vegetable garden beds that have been removed. All that soil looks good, but it is dry, sandy and thick with roots from the trees that you can see in the background, especially from the Rubber tree on the left which started out as an indoor pot plant! There are another 3 beds to be dismantled, with another one already gone in another part of the garden.

Sunday, 3 June 2018

Things Come and Things Go.

 Some years ago these raised and enclosed vegetable garden beds  built in our garden. The idea was to keep out the marauding possums, birds and rats who consistently ate our produce. Well that worked for all but the rats, who just ate through the mesh at the front or crawled up underneath it. The ends and tops of the cages were of aviary wire, but we had to be able to harvest the veggies ourselves, hence the woven heavy twine 'curtains'.
 We persevered for about 7 years, but in the end it wasn't the rats that made us decide to dismantle the beds, but the fact that the supposedly long lasting and 'eco timber' surrounds started to rot away.  Above you can see the custom made shade cloth covers that protected the vegetables through our scorching summers. These were huge and heavy, taking 2 people quite a while to put into place.
The penultimate photo of the dismantled beds in the southern end of the vegetable garden. What a job that was to unscrew, unbolt and take apart the super structure. Big decisions now about what to do next, as we still want to grow vegetables, but not to lose almost all of it to the animals!

Friday, 1 June 2018

Photoshop Play.

 With no time to set up for more printing so far this week, I had a play with one of the collagraph plates in Photoshop. The one above reminds me of looking out from a camp site at night with the light on the nearby vegetation and the darkness beyond.
This is another version, looking much colder and with the added moon and it's glow, more of the background hills are visible.

Tuesday, 29 May 2018

First Prints.

 With a couple of free hours this afternoon I did a speedy print from two of the new collagraph plates. This first one above is not very successful, mainly I think because there is too much difference in the height of the various bits of vegetation. The leaves are very flat, but the stems are quite thick, so the paint accumulates on the sides of the stems and the leaves are quite indistinct. I might try to pare down the stems and have another try.
This is much more successful, with some nice marks made by the flower heads and the pieces of stringy bark in the fore ground. I might try painting this one in water colours perhaps.