As this is my final project of the course I’m aware it’s important to try and chose a subject or area that I can showcase my ability/ how my printmaking has improved. In the course material there is a suggestion to try something very different, and for me that would probably mean doing something abstract. But I don’t think this is the best time to try something I’m not used to doing and have no idea about how to do ‘well’.
My current thinking is to produce a series of prints based on a reworking of a series of prints that Eric Ravilious produced. My inspiration comes from a book called ‘High Street’ written by J.M.Richards & Illustrated by Eric Ravilious.
High Street was first published in 1938 and contained the writings of architectural historian J.M.Richards alongside the illustrations of Eric Ravilious. The book portrays the British high street (at the time), with text written about the origin and purpose of various shops, accompanied by lithographic prints.
In the foreword of the book J.M.Richards writes about how the high street is changing and smaller more specialist shops were beginning to be replaced by branches of larger multiple stores. He comments that this is leading to a disappearance of the personality and charm of local shops.
Why am I mentioning this? Well this is something of personal interest. The area I live in has a small street of shops, which appear to have been built in the 1930’s to serve the local area. On this street I can only think of two or three shops which are family or locally run and are not part of larger chain of stores. I’m not saying that chain stores are evil or should be banned but merely it’d be nice to make a point of celebrating the traditional stores that still stand as well as representing the chain stores.
I’d like to produce my series of prints around the theme of celebrating these local stores and also capturing the feel of the chain stores.
Current ideas are: The family Butchers, The Bakers (in my case Gregg’s), The Chemist (Boots), The Pub, A Cafe?
Some images from the book are particularly inspiring:
Although these beautiful illustrations are colour lithographic prints, I feel that it would be possible to create something with a similar feel using a combination of mono printing, linocutting and collage. Perhaps I will be proved wrong but I’d like to give it a try!