BHIP / Interns / Letterpress / Printing

Finishing Up that Linocut!

Melanie and I on my last day at PRESS

Melanie and I on my last day at PRESS

Hi everyone! As Jonas mentioned in the previous post, my full-time days at PRESS have sadly come to an end. I had such a wonderful summer with Melanie and Jonas; they both taught me so much in my three months with PRESS! Lucky for me, I’ll still be helping out from afar as much as I can! You haven’t seen the last of me!

That being said, I should put some sort of conclusion to the story of my first linocut:

The full quotation from Boy, Snow, Bird is: Silhouette2
“The general advice is always be yourself, be yourself, which only makes sense if you haven’t got an attitude problem.” When Melanie, Jonas, and I read this book, this quotation reminded me of a photograph I took of my sister about four years ago. I decided to base my first linocut loosely on this image.

After printing the gradient (a very tricky task; those rollers are too good at doing their job!), I printed the dark blue portion of type. After printing in blue, I darkened the ink to a blue-black to print the silhouette. The first of my eight prints was sacrificed to discovering that I hadn’t cut the linoleum down low enough, so I printed a lot of undesired lines! After some adjustments to the block, I was able to successfully print the final seven figures.

The next day saw the hardest part of my project: trying to print in white on the top of the blue gradient. After the white came out rather gray, Melanie and I thoroughly cleaned the PRESS. As it turns out, the issue was not only in the cleanliness of the press, but also my prints! Since I had just printed the blue the day before, it would seem that the prints were not quite dry, and the inks were mixing on contact. The white print was not legible enough for me, so we made the executive decision to print the first part of the quote in blue-black, like the figure. 

Though it is not what I originally planned, I am pleased with my print! It was a great project for my last few days at PRESS. I am so excited about the things to come at this wonderful gallery, and will be sure to keep sharing them with you!

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