Week Ten – 6 Dec 18

Accept what is, let go of what was, and have faith in what will be.” —Sonia Ricotti

I have to say that this past week has been quite trying, I have really struggled to get my brain working, write this blog or be creative. I have a list of things that need doing with deadlines in early January, but I just have no impetus to do any of it. I am exhausted. I have tried easing up and doing what I can, but that voice in my head is just nattering me to ‘get on with it!’ in a very unforgiving way which just makes me feel worse. I have just had to accept that I simply cannot do everything right now, that maybe I just need to step back a bit and work more over the Xmas holidays.

In the Studio:

I have been experimenting with blind embossing on one of my screen prints. Initially, I found it difficult to get my head around the whole ‘reverse’ concept of laying out the fragments and registration, but I did ‘get it’ in the end.

Preparing layout and registration on tracing paper
All laid out and ready to emboss

Final print;

I would quite like to try it with the embossing coming forward rather than ‘imprinted’…


On Thursday I allowed myself to simply ‘play’ with a brass plate. I was stripping the cured BIG ground off the plate and decided to leave some of it on and see what it would do when etched. So I gently cleaned it off and when dry I put in the Ferric acid bath for about an hour! It probably didn’t need that long but…

Randomly etched brass plate with whippet head stencil

AB suggested I lay a stencil shape on it, so I cut out a whippet head (of course 😉 ). I inked up in blue first and laid the whippet head down, then using registration weights to maintain plate placement, I cleaned up the plate and re-inked it in red, re laid the whippet down in another place and printed again. Finally the plate was inked up in yellow and the stencil laid down again (I probably should have done yellow first, but this is an experiment so…).

This was the result;

What’s next;

Over the Xmas holidays I hope to finish my power point presentation so I can relax a little.

More cyanotypes, if the sun comes out!?

I would like to spend some time in my home studio experimenting with spit bite, coffee lifts and maybe some photo etching on aluminium, printing previous plates and I will also need to prepare my work for assessment in January.

Wishing you all a very merry festive season 🙂


Week Nine – 29 Nov 18

“Colour is my day-long obsession, joy and torment.” Claude Monet

If you have been following my blog of late, you will know all too well just how far out of my comfort zone I am with colour; the theory and mixing etc… I feel as though I have been kind of creatively ‘winging it’ thus far and though I am trying hard to understand colour theory, it still feels like a scary and complex subject for me indeed.

It would appear that simply juxtaposing the colours prior to printing to see how they might or might not work is actually very difficult to envisage, as the colours that are created in the mixing pot are often quite different to when they are printed. Maybe this is simply down to my lack of experience with this particular process and that I just need more practice and exploration… hmm a work in progress and so it goes on 😉

In the studio:

Screen printing, with all it’s potential colour and placement combinations, has been both quite addictive fun and hard work. Just as I get into full flow, my back starts to give way and I need to stop, very frustrating. I guess I would want to set up a system at home that would work better with my back, perhaps a smaller screen, different table height etc and maybe a gym membership?! (Only joking!!) Sadly I forgot to take my mobile phone on one of the days and so I didn’t take as many ‘through the stages’ photos this week. Anyway, the ‘screenathon’ continues;

I have been experimenting with templates and first off, I almost put the template on the wrong screen – eek! Has been one of ‘those’ weeks 😉

I tried it on a few images and the jury is still out on the results for me;

I did start a few more straight forward ‘face’ prints but kind of lost confidence in my colour choices, felt I was just paying lip service a bit, and so I decided to step away and work on some more colour combinations at home before I continue…

I am still researching the concept of self-identity and the self-portrait and the different ways it has been expressed in art. A very interesting subject that I am really enjoying exploring…

I have also been looking into the colourful works of screen print artists such as Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein and Peter Blake along with a few contemporaries.

Peter Blake with his Beatles Love me do 2004 Screen Print. Photo by Getty Images
Birds overlay by Joe Wilson www.joe-wilson.com

Meanwhile, in between all the screen printing and artist research, I did manage to pop up to the Andrew Logan exhibition currently showing at the Aberystwyth Arts Centre. A very interesting exhibition, well worth a look if you are in the area; I particularly loved this one.


After a lot of thought I decided not to submit my work into a magazine and an online gallery, felt a bit uneasy about them. However, I am preparing work to apply to a local gallery in Aberystwyth for an ‘Artist of the Month’ slot next year. A great little gallery with some fabulous work inside, another place to visit if you are in Aberystwyth. Watch this space- eek!

I have been a resident guest artist since April at another lovely gallery in Machynlleth, Powys called Oriel Seren which I love being a part of. It is full of some really wonderful work, well worth a visit.

What’s next?

More colour theory; I am hoping to buy more acrylic paints this week to continue exploring various colour possibilities. More screen printing using new colour mixes. I will also be experimenting with the photo etching fragments, starting with embossing these onto some of the screen printed images. I am also continually working on the construction of my power point presentation for January… and breathe.