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Posts from the ‘Printmaking’ Category

My Studio

I went to my studio this morning to sweep the floor and before I knew it, I had the paint and the door was a different colour.  You have seen the studio before, it has featured quite a bit in the photos of the garden.  The previous post had the studio in the background.  I have a photo of the studio with its new colour scheme.

The photo was taken with my phone and I’m afraid it isn’t a great photo.  Though it does let you see what the colour of the door now is.  I think that colour will blend it more than the pink previously.  Hopefully it won’t stand out so much.  I will have to give it another coat.

I also took some photos of inside to show my small compact studio.

This is from outside.  It needs a good clean up, but it is a working studio and therefore being tidy isn’t always a priority.  I don’t always get to spend a lot of time in it, so when I do, I like to be working, not cleaning.

I have lots of shelves full of things and anyone who knows my work knows that I love still life and part of doing still life is collecting things to use in work.  The jugs at the top I got when in first year at university, I spent a whole year drawing and making prints of jugs.  I wanted to concentrate on just one thing.  Now I have jugs everywhere.  I also like to collect tea sets, and have lots of cups and saucers, teapots, sugar bowls and milk jugs.  Hoping to start some work on those soon.

Some very old drawings that I did years ago, my overhead projector and a copy of the last print I did.  This bench is something I really need to get organised better.  I really like the surface on it and would like to use it in some paintings.

The press, it is small, but not bad for small work.  I don’t own it and borrowed it quite a few years ago from a friend.  She hasn’t been using it, so it has been handy for me.  I would like to get back into doing some etching and the press will be ideal for that.  I only proof on this press and when I want to edition something I take it into APW and print it there.

My TV, I can’t work in the studio without it.  It isn’t that I’m so addicted that I have to be watching it, but I like the conversations going on in the background.  I tend to watch DVD’s and since I have watched them so many times already, it really is just background noise.  I don’t know, makes me feel less lonely out there.

So that is a look around my studio, hopefully I will have some work to show you soon.  I won’t be putting anymore gardening photos on here as I’ve started a new blog for the garden called Dirt and Flowers, so I will keep that blog updated with what is happening around my garden.  This blog will go back to being purely about my art practice and photography.

Old Ideas

When I was studying art at the VCA I was fascinated by the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant explosion and the subsequent after affects, mainly for the town of Pripyat.  I loved looking at the photos of what the place looks like now, and what our homes would like in the future if we just had to walk out and never return.  It is interesting.

I do love still life.  I like the simplicity of it and I love the objects that are in them.  However, after saying that, I don’t like things put together for no reason other than to make a pretty picture.  I like still life’s that have a story, that convey something to the viewer.  I would like my still life’s to be like theatre and to be more than just a few pretty objects sitting around.  My house is full of things that I’ve bought to use in paintings, and in some ways have become like ornaments.

I have been in my garden so much lately, and really haven’t been doing much art work, something that needs to be changed.  I thought I might share some the prints that I did when I was at uni.  They are all lithographs.  I loved drawing on the litho stone, it was the most beautiful surface I have ever drawn on, and the beauty was also that I got to print it and get multiple copies of my drawings.

Window Sill

Water Jug

Teapot

Coffee

Bottles for Recycling

Phone and Apple

Dirty Dishes

Cup and Bowl

The colour in them, the ones that have colour, were all hand coloured.  It is nice seeing them again.

I’ve been working on some new still lifes, but I haven’t quite got the images I want yet.  I’ve been preparing 3 canvas’ and hopefully will start painting next week.

Working on New Ideas

It has been a busy time, I’ve been to Sydney and photographed the Australian Junior Track Championships.  It was nice going somewhere different to take photos.  New challenges and trying to work out how it will work.  I got some great shots and I hope people are generally happy with them.

I still have my exhibition on in July at Cafe Racer and need to get a move on working on stuff for that.  I don’t really want to do anymore linocuts for it as I think they could be a waste of time.  My target audience don’t get what they are, so is there any point in doing them. Perhaps if I can get people to understand them there might be a place for them in the future.

I have been working on my garden as well, and the area that needs the most work is where the tree was, and of course in front of my studio.  I showed you photos of the tree coming down, but I didn’t show the aftermath.

I was left with a destroyed backyard and there was nothing left of the garden that I had been working hard on.  It was soul destroying.  Even after almost a month, it still makes me very sad and very angry to see what happened to my yard.

Now, as time has moved on, the garden has changed again, but hopefully working towards something better.  The last of the wood finally went yesterday, so I don’t have the hassle of what I’m going to do with that.  I was putting it up on the nature strip when a guy drove by, was interested, and when I told him how much there was, said he would take the lot and I didn’t have to move anymore of it.  So massive bonus.

Sorry, the photo isn’t great, just took it then with my phone.  Too early in the morning.  I think you can see the progress so far.  New plants have been planted.  Four new trees that will screen out the neighbours eventually.  I need some more of those.  The neighbours right beside us, who had wanted the tree gone for many years, haven’t said a thing to us.  All we have seen them do is jump on the fence and perve into our yard.  I think that is such a violation.  She, the wife, even got on the fence and spoke to the man who was removing the stump, can’t believe she thought she had a right, after refusing to pay any money for it.  Well, I think they have done their dash, and if they want anything from us in the future, well they better not ask.

Next big job is getting rid of a lot of the cement that is in front of my studio.  It will be good to work in there once all the work is done.  I have had trouble with the studio door not closing for awhile, but yesterday I broke some cement off, that I thought was lifting one of the corners, and it worked, it sunk back down a bit and the door now shuts and can be locked again.  So happy about that.

I have never really been into gardening, but I find that I love working in it, and I love how it is looking.  I fancy myself to be a like Margaret Olley, she has a gorgeous garden and is a still life painter.  I want to be like her when I grow up.

That is enough for this post.  I have been working on some new stuff, but it is all tied together with the garden and moving on.  Next time.

 

Printing Another One

Well, I finally got around to printing that last lino that I did.  Here is a reminder of what the lino looked like.

I was hoping when it was printed it would look fantastic.  It wasn’t easy printing it, the lino is really too big for the small press I have, but I managed.

I’m reasonable happy with it, though would be happier when I can get into APW and print it properly.  I will also be happier when I can work out how to photograph them properly as well.  Let me know what you think.

Finding Stuff and the Weekend.

The Theatre

I’ve been sorting stuff out and cleaning up things around my house and I found my old visual diary from a couple 2007.  I was trying to find it when I was talking about set design and how I go about designing sets.  I knew I had a diary somewhere that had been the start of what I used for the play “Dinner”.

I was given the brief that the director didn’t really want a set, just a table with the people sitting around it on top of the revolve.  I had been thinking windows, and then came up with thisIt was designed so that  when the revolving floor moved, it wouldn’t upset the pattern and it wouldn’t matter where it stopped.  The revolve edge would be one of the inner circles.

Photographing Cycling

I went to Ballarat on the weekend to take photos of the Ballarat Madison 2011.  It was a good day and when I got home I quite enjoyed seeing the photos.  The velodrome at Ballarat has just been re-surfaced and the starkness of it made for some nice photos.  It was interesting to see the bright colours of the cyclists apparel against the coldness of the concrete of the track.  To make it a little more interesting it was overcast in the morning, so the sky was also grey.  My camera had a hard time adjusting to it and some of the photos needed to be edited but it was good that I still had quite a few to use.

When I’m at a cycling event like that I don’t often think, wow that would make a good lino cut or a good sugar lift.  I don’t tend to think of track like that, but in the afternoon as the sun starting going lower in the sky the shadows on the track got longer they were more interesting in some ways than the cyclists.The shadows fascinated me and I kept trying to get more.  Of course, I missed the first ones I saw and then the scene that had happened never seemed to happen again, that is cyclists all over the area and shadows every where.  I know I can do something with this, and will start experimenting to see what I can come up with.

Finally Finished

Yesterday I finished the lino I have been working on for some time.  It seems to have taken so long to do.  I have been working on it for over a month.  It is the biggest one I’ve done so far and I love it.  I can’t wait to see what it looks like printed.  I have a small press here, but I’m a bit worried this one might be too big for it to proof it here.  I might go out today and check it out.  Otherwise I will have to wait until I can go into APW and print it there.  Of course, the real problem with that is if there is something wrong it I will either have to leave and come home to fix it up or spend time there doing that.

The next big question is, do I do more lino cuts or do I move onto something different?  I could paint.  Perhaps I really should get more into the painting.  Today I think I will just think about it.  I’ve hurt my wrist somehow and I think I might need to rest it.

Life as an Artist

I entered the above print into an competition and sadly I was rejected.  It isn’t just writers that have to suffer that.  Unfortunately it is something that artists have to go through as well.  It is quite unnerving to have someone say they don’t want your work, but common.

The life of an artist can be quite isolated.  Mostly you have to work alone and you put everything you have into your work and then to have someone say that it isn’t good enough can be quite gut wrenching.  It makes you start questioning everything about your art practice and whether or not you are good enough.

I must say I’ve been experiencing this quite a bit lately.  I love the lino cuts, and I know other people do as well, but they aren’t selling and I have to start asking myself the question do I keep going.  Is there any point continuing on with something that people either don’t want, or people just don’t understand.

I have been quite disheartened to hear that when people look at the lino cuts they think they are digital.  I know people look at them and think “why should I pay for that, when I could do that myself”.  So the hours and hours I spend on the work is wasted.  I know it looks like a computer image, but that is part of the attraction, and is only a small part of what it is.  I am sure if people looked at them close enough then would be able to see the mistakes and tell that they are handmade.

I face a dilemma, if the people, who I thought, would be interested in them, think they are digital things done on the computer, and won’t buy them, then the market I thought I had for them is not there at all.  On the other hand they are going to be seen as too commercial for the art world and I won’t have a market there for them either.  What to do.  I am stuck between a rock and hard place.

I know I shouldn’t give up and I have to keep going, but perhaps there does need to be some change in the way I work.  I really don’t want to have to go and get a real job.  I will have to continue experimenting.  Perhaps it is also too soon to see and I just need to be patient.