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As A Level Fine Art students start preparing for their exams, we have had some lovely experiments with printmaking! Repeat patterns copied from 1920’s block prints and designs and some screen prints inspired by piles of fabric. Can’t wait to see what they do next! #art #design #printmaking #screenprint #fabric #blockprint
Extended Diploma Art and Design students have been developing ideas for a repeat pattern block printing in a a workshop this month.
Some students are at the early stages of printing their designs, with the intention of layering multiple colours and reducing the printing block.
The designs are cut into the lino squares, then inked by roller before printing the pattern by hand, or foot!
We interviewed one of our Art & Design Lecturers Gwyl Lewis about a recent Moku Hanga (Japanese woodcut) day workshop he ran a Truro College.
I: What is Moku Hanga?
G: Simply it is the Japanese form of woodcut, though we do look at other water based woodcut traditions, but the Japanese have developed this form to highly sophisticated art form.
I: How Does it differ from western woodcut?
G: Its main difference is the printing with water based inks as opposed to oil based inks, which makes it a safer way of printing, so good for health and safety and ecologically sound.
I: Does Moku Hanga have any other special attributes?
G: Yes the Japanese didn’t use Printing presses, so printed by hand, which makes it ideal for the amateur artist, with very little outlay on equipment.
I: How did you start doing this form of printmaking?
G: I Had several Japanese tutors over the years , but I suppose being a student of Rebecca Salter Britain’s leading expert on Moku Hanga (she has publish several books on subject) while I was studying for my Printmaking M.A. Also my own researches, I have been running workshops in Moku Hanga since the late 1990s in Art schools and other venues.
I: Do you have to have to be artistically knowledgeable to do your day workshop?
G: Not at all. A willingness to learn something new, one of the good aspects of printmaking, is that it is a process based art form, while people are concentrating on the process they forget erroneous notions that they can’t draw etc, and in fact they are always surprised by the outcome when they peel back the paper there is a good print design it’s a kind of magic one never gets tired of. I run the course so beginners, and persons with some printmaking knowledge, will all gain from the workshop.
I: This sounds exciting are you going to be running another workshop in the near future?
G: Yes, on Saturday 10th February.
I: How would you join in?
G: If you contact Part-time courses at Truro College on 01872 265800, they will give you some information on enrolling.
I: Do you run any other printmaking courses ?
G: Yes, I run two adult education evening courses. One on introductory printmaking course, and printmaking master class starting very soon. Also a one day wood engraving course later in the term, all of which Part -time courses have more info on.
I: Gwyl, many thanks.
One of the challenges of teaching printmaking to the design students on the Extended Diploma course has been trying to find ways of making it relate to the 3D and sculptural element of the pathway. The first brief the students worked on was character design using the surrealist game Exquisite Corpse as a starting point. One of the traditional print methods the students explored was etching. Working from characters that had be created in previous sessions students prepared and printed their whole character. These plates were then cut up into three sections again and rearranged to create further weird and wonderful characters. To extend this idea further each plate was inked up again and made into a cube, into which plaster was poured. Once the plaster had dried the plates were removed revealing the transferred designs. The idea was that the blocks could be stacked and rearrange in a multitude of different ways. This method of making 3 dimensional forms in print as also been extended to other forms of printing such as monotype, card relief and collagraph printing.
Next in our series on past students is our very own screen print technician and artist Amy Lanyon –
“I studied A-level Art at Truro College between 1999 and 2001. During my time there I had to make lots of decisions about the direction of my future and with the fantastic support of the lecturers and tutors I was able to make informed choices that lead me to where I am now, successfully working as an independent artist and designer.”
“My one-off original screen prints evolve from a sequence of processes and exploration of media to produce primarily shape-based and abstract compositions. None of my pieces are named because I want people to interpret the piece themselves, without being influenced by me. Part of my enjoyment of producing abstract pieces is to find out how my work makes people feel, so by leaving my pieces anonymous, I know that I am not influencing their thoughts. I was brought up surrounded by inspirational artwork, my grandfather was the St.Ives artist Peter Lanyon, and so I don’t think I could have avoided being influenced by artists such as Barbara Hepworth and Sir Terry Frost. In 1999 I was lucky enough to meet and interview Sir Terry Frost and I was utterly in awe of his work and his stories behind them.”
You can view more of Amy`s stunning prints online via her website HERE.