Types of Print
The ways of making a print are many and varied. Some methods require specialist presses and some can be done with minimal equipment on the kitchen table. I enjoy experimenting with several methods.
Printmaking involves a plate which holds the ink. The paper is then pressed onto the plate and the result is the print. Some plates can be reused and an 'edition' of near-identical prints can be created. Some are one off's and can never be exactly repeated. By their very hand-made nature no two prints will ever be exactly identical... but that's the beauty of them.
Created by using rollers, painting, stencils and many more techniques there is only one of this print, it is unique. A second pull can create a paler image called the 'ghost' of the original.
A monotype may be created all at once or may be built up with many layers.
The design is scratched into a perspex plate which is then inked and polished leaving the ink in the scratches. The plate can be used several times but the inking varied to created slightly different prints.
I enjoy experimenting with how much ink I leave on the unscratched parts of the plate to create a series of similar but non-identical prints.
The design is carved into a lino plate. The ink is applied using a roller and sits on the raised, uncarved, parts of the lino.
To build up colours several plates can be made or the 'reduction' method (which I prefer) used. This is where more lino is cut away after each inking. Multiple prints can be taken between each carving but the plate is destroyed in the making of the prints so a limited number of prints will result.
The way the plate is inked can be varied to again create similar but non-identical prints from the same plate.
A plate, usually mountboard or similar, is made by building up textures, or cutting away into the plate. There is endless scope , I like using texture paste and textured wall paper alongside lace or textured paper packing materials. Once complete the plate is coated in button polish and then inked using brushes and rollers with some polishing to ensure a fine layer of ink.
It is near impossible to replicate the exact inking of the plate each time therefore collagraphs tend to be a series of similar prints rather than an edition of near-identcal ones.