Project 13: ‘Feel’s Like Home’ – Combination Prints

In my last post ( I mentioned towards the end of the post, wanting to take a bit of a risk and try a different combination print to what I first thought would work.

More on the process here:

I wanted to paint the printing plate and have the print taken from that as the mono print part in the combination. I was aware that painting the features of the house directly onto the printing plate would require me painting the images on reverse so as to print the right way round.

To help me do this I used Photoshop to flip the photo’s I’d taken of the house on the horizontal edge, see the the photo of my front door number below:

Front door number flipped horizontally.

Front door number flipped horizontally.

I then marked out the parameters for where to paint on the glass plate use masking tape (I masked where the edge of the printed paper would be). I tried to spread the painting of the window, front door, house number and a window across the whole printing area so that there would be a sense of movement in the print.

I used Caligo safe wash inks, an oil based ink, and linseed oil to thin the ink to the consistency needed for painting. I could’ve used lots of colours at this stage but I wanted to stick to a limited colour palette so as not to overcrowd the print. As the lino print layer of the print was in a process blue I wanted to stick to a palette of blue tones with white and black. But I wanted there to be some contrast created by colour as well so used a burnt sienna in moderation as a brick colour in the print.

Inking plate with mixes of colours for printing.

Inking plate with mixes of colours for printing.

The first combination print:

Print 1/2 - Combination Mono print & Lino print on thin Japanese paper.

Print 1/2 – Combination Mono print & Lino print on thin Japanese paper.

I was pleasantly surprised with how the first print turned out as I wasn’t entirely sure how the combination of techniques would work together. I think that the border created by the lino print works really well and helps keep the whole image together, stopping it looking random but also not stifling a sense of movement. I was also happy with the way the painted mono prints sat on top of the lino print, semi-opaque so that you can see the two layers interacting,  I am however slightly unsure of colour, I think the orange/brown does add a nice contrast but I’m unsure as to whether or not it’s enough of a contrast given the brief wanted contrast to be quite evident.

The second combination print :

Print 2/2 - Combination Mono print and Lino print on slightly thicker Japanese paper.

Print 2/2 – Combination Mono print and Lino print on Japanese Simili Paper (80gsm)

Asides from using a slightly thicker Japanese paper there’s not really much difference between the first and the second prints. I re-painted the printing plate so it would be a fresh mono print rather than a ghost print but I did the painting in the same positions as with the first print. I think I prefer the result of the second print as it’s a bit stronger and cleaner on the paper.

I also did a bit of an experimental print using kitchen roll. As I began to clean the lino block after printing it occurred to me that it might be interesting to see how a print would look now the lino was a bit damp. I then saved that print and added to it by taking a ghost print of the printing plate after the mono print had been done:

Print taken on kitchen roll whilst cleaning the lino block and a ghost print of the painted inking plate.

Experimental print taken on kitchen roll

I know it’s not a technique I’ll use this project but I like the result, it looks like a water colour or ink painting as opposed to a traditional print.

I think I’m now at the stage where I can’t afford to spend too much more time on this project at the expense of the others, so my next steps are deciding on colour combinations for making my final series of three prints. I think I’m happy with the design I have even if it’s slightly different from what I had originally intended.



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