Experiments in Pressure Prints

Winter can be a real bugger for trying to accomplish work in the shop. After the previous post about my initial experiments, the cold fronts that came through the Eastern Seaboard brought along some sickness to first my wife and then me. This along with an every day winter term class completely took away from any more fun in the shop in January. Since then I have been trying to get better, but also trying to get other items off the ground and balance my new schedule with my new part-time retail work.

But thankfully, the new semester has started, my regular schedule is starting to fall into place and I am feeling better. This semester I am lucky enough to be teaching an Introduction to Printmaking course in the Honors Department for Non-Majors, a majority of which are in the fields of science and engineering. It is a really great class so far and they all seem to be rather gung-ho about getting right into the shop and playing around. We had our first full studio work period this past Thursday and each produced a monoprint in that time period, all getting used to the process.

As for R&D work, I was able to spend a few hours in the shop this past Saturday and produced some interesting results in continuing to experiment with the roller that Chris Bathgate created.

Aluminum core with epoxied brass outer cylinder.

Aluminum core with epoxied brass outer cylinder.

This time I played around with using the roller as a tool for removing ink instead of applying it. Similarly to pressure prints, but without running the tool through the press with the plate and paper. Instead I laid newsprint over the rolled up plexi-glass and rolled the tool over the back to try and remove ink from the plates surface before printing.

Newsprint with initial ink removal from first test.

Newsprint with initial ink removal from first test.

Plate showing first test in ink removal

Plate showing first test in ink removal

Close Up of Plate before First Test

Close Up of Plate before First Test

As you can see, there was a good amount of ink removed with the pressure of the roller. The newsprint shows an interesting positive creation, while the final print shows a beautiful negative version of the imagery.

First Test Print

First Test Print

Next I played around with using a sheet of newsprint and rolling the tool over the surface randomly to build upon the mark making and not keep it so rigid.

Newsprint Removal for Second Test Print

Newsprint Removal for Second Test Print

Second Test Print

Second Test Print

In the second test, the roller’s mark making starts to vary more and build layers to the space in the blacked out background. Immediately it started to make me think about utilizing the tool as a mark maker on softgrounds for etchings for an editionable formatted print.

The third test was to see what could be done as a pressure print through a piece of Rives BFK and not news print, as a way of creating a positive image monoprint from the process. I then printed that plate as a fourth test to see how that turned out for a negative impression.

Third Test Pressure onto BFK

Third Test Pressure onto BFK

Fourth Test, Negative of BFK Pressure Test

Fourth Test, Negative of BFK Pressure Test

All four tests.

All four tests.

All the results have some really nice visual aspects that I think could lend themselves in the process of creating the edition with Chris. I have sent him the images and look to set a time to meet in the next few weeks to talk about the possibilities that these tests have created.

As for the other editions, Steve continues to give me updates on the coding. I hope to be able to start loading images in the next month or so and then see how we can translate them into print processes. And I am meeting with Tom Petzwinkler today to talk further about his ideas and brainstorm about what we might be able to start experimenting with.

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