After the Etching with Don Braisby Workshop at the Regional Print Centre, I decided to visit the exhibition of Don’s work at Oriel Sycarth Gallery at Glyndwr University in Wrexham. Don is exhibiting here along with John Hedley.
Research in The Art of Corrosion I
Don Braisby is an artist printmaker currently conducting PhD reserch in Fine Art within the School of Creative Arts at Wrexham Glyndwr University.
The prints on display focus on natural forms, surfaces and intense colour and reflect his interest in the use of electrolysis as a safe etching process.
This two day course enabled me to practice more with the 2 colour printing and also provided me the opportunity to practice with the image I plan to use for the Twenty Twenty. I definitely feel I achieved a lot over this two days and that my confidence in lino cutting and printing has increased. I also loved the safe wash inks we used and much prefer using these oil based inks to water based ink.
This workshop focused on using screen printing with two colours to achieve a third colour. During this two days, I became more confident with the idea of layering colour in printing.
Tom Frost studied illustration at Falmouth College of Art, and since graduating in 2001 has been working as a freelance illustrator in Bristol. For three years he has been a member of Snap Studios in central Bristol pursuing his love of screen printing. His work is inspired by his passion for old match boxes, vintage tin toys, folk art, children’s books and stamps. Utilising screen printing, plywood, vintage Meccano, acrylic paint, Gocco machines and perspiration, he hopes to create items that people will cherish for years to come.
Having worked with Book Making previously, I was really looking forward to this workshop. We began this workshop by creating some Flutter Book templates from A4 sheets of paper.
Once we were comfortable with the process we then spent some time practicing on prints that had been previously left at the Print Centre. As I was already familiar with the process I found it easier to get started with this.
We then discussed a variation on the Japanese Stab Stitch, a two hole version and looked at binding a book using an elastic band and a three hole pamphlet stitch.
We then had the opportunity to begin adding some covers to the books we had created earlier.
We began the day with a brief introduction into the types of printing processes we are likely to encounter.
Conventional printing has four types of process:
Plano-graphics, in which the printing and non-printing areas are on the same plane surface and the difference between them is maintained chemically or by physical properties, the examples are: offset lithography, collotype, and screenless printing.
Relief, in which the printing areas are on a plane surface and the non printing areas are below the surface, examples: flexography and letterpress.
Intaglio, in which the non-printing areas are on a plane surface and the printing area are etched or engraved below the surface, examples: steel die engraving, gravure
Porous, in which the printing areas are on fine mesh screens through which ink can penetrate, and the non-printing areas are a stencil over the screen to block the flow of ink in those areas, examples: screen printing, stencil duplicator.
This was followed with a discussion about the importance of using a registration system when printing followed by a practice at setting up a basic registration system to be used with some screen printing later in the day.
We created a template using cellophane for the size of paper that we we going to use by drawing an outline in the centre for the size of the print. After creating an acetate with our image, we then placed a cross in one corner of the template and one corner of the acetate with the printed image.
After transferring the image to our screens using the light box, we then began to set the registration up on the screen bed ready for printing.
First, we added some corner supports to the screen to make an even snap – this is used to control the contact of the screen with the substrate – this helps you to keep your screen prints crisp and sharp.
We then used the template we had created earlier with the acetate to line up the image on the screen with the image on the acetate.
Once everything was lined up we created registration tabs and placed them along one long side and one short side of the cellophane template – these were there to line our paper up with once we started printing.
Once we had set up our registration system on our screen beds we then made some screen prints using the screen bed and the registration system we had created.
For the latter part of the day we created a collagraph to be used with the planned viscosity printing.
In collagraphy,a variety ofmaterials are applied to a rigid underlying layer (such as ragboard or masonite). The word is derived from the Greek word koll or kolla, meaning glue and graph, or the act of drawing. I begin by making collages of cardboard, pasted paper and other textures. I can ink the resulting plate as an intaglio, or with a roller or paintbrush, or some combination of these. The resulting print is termed a collagraph. Substances such as acrylic texture mediums, sandpapers, cloth, string, or cut cardboard can all be used in creating the plate. Collagraphy is a very open printmaking method. Ink can be applied to the upper surfaces of the plate with a brayer for a relief print, or ink can be applied to the entire board and then removed from the upper surfaces, leaving it in the lower spaces, resulting in an intaglio print.
I attended the Reduction Linocut Workshop with Ian Phillips as part of the Print Scholarship and found the workshop to be particularly informative and my skill in lino cut printing vastly improved as a result.
My perception of lino printing has changed as a result of this workshop and I can now see more ways to include lino printing into my art practice. This workshop has inspired me so much that I am now going to work with Reduction Linocut printing for Llawn 100.
The first step of this process was to trace an outline of our drawing that we were using. Two youths playing chess is part of the Mascen Wledig legend, which I am working with for another project. Once the tracing was complete we then used a water resistant carbon paper to transfer the image onto the lino.
Once fixed, we then began to cut away only the parts of the image that needed to appear white ready for printing the first colour.
The process was then repeated removing all that I didn’t want to be the second colour.
And then repeating the process for the final colour.
The experience of this workshop has inspired me to work with Reduction Lino Printing for Llawn 100, an event where you create 100 pieces or do 100 things and upload the result to Instagram with the hastags #Llawn and #Llawn100.
I attended a workshop with Don Braisby on Saline Sulphate Etching and Electro Etching. This formed part of the selection process for the Printmaking Scholarship that I had previously applied for.
Don began the workshop by giving us an overview of the Saline Sulphate Etching process and the potential mark making effects that can be gained by using different methods, for example, using hard ground or soft ground, other materials for stop outs such as wax, shellac, permanent marker and Fablon.
He then discussed the recipe for the Saline Solution and the process around the actual etching of your work and showed us some examples of his plates, both aluminium etched with Saline Sulphate and Stainless Steel etched using Electro Etching.
Saline Sulphate Etching
We then began working on aluminium plates of our own, experimenting with mark making to produce plates that had been etched in the Saline Sulphate Solution and that were ready for printing.
The images below show my first effort. I was particularly interested in working with Fablon, probably because I’ve felt I had not great results when I have used Hard and Soft Ground previously. I did also use a permanent marker and this did give me some shading in the piece.
On the afternoon of the first day we then went on to work with Electro Etching. This is a completely new process to me, one which I was quite nervous of, however we were reassured that the Electro Etching produces finer lines that the Saline Sulphate Etching. This method is something that I would need to spend more time understanding, in particular the science behind the process, so that I might gain a better understanding.
Before working on the Steel Plate we attached a handle to be used in the Electro Etching process. I then worked on my piece of Steel plate preparing it for etching in much the same way as with the Saline Sulphate Etching, this time using both Fablon and Shellace. Then, once ready the plate was placed into an Electro Etching bath. The Workshop Notes cover the Electro Etching process in detail.
The next day we were given the opportunity to explore the processes further and produce additional pieces of work. I decided that I would like to practice working with Fablon further and made my next piece, where I started to consider using the etching process to create shade in the image.
My final piece of the workshop, I decided to experiment further with the idea of shade and came up with the following result, the grey part of the etching, I had only etched for a few minutes to create that idea of different shades of colour.
The artists below are recommended by Don regards the Electro Etching Process.