Well, it has been longer than I'd hoped, but finally I have a chance to share one of my new prints with you.
This new etching is 20 x 30 cm , and was made with a combination of hardground, softground and aquatint techniques. It is printed with both black and sepia inks, and the touches of green and pink were added by hand-colouring with watercolour.
I've included a lot of close shots here, since this print is so full of pattern and intricate details. There is plenty here to reward a long look!
I was also quite pleased with the way some of these close-up photos show the subtly three-dimensional character of the print. Because the intaglio printing process uses extreme pressure to press thick, dampened paper into the crevices of the copper plate (where the ink sits), the ink is actually deposited on the paper in little hills and ridges.
It took quite a while, but I really enjoyed forming all these less than fingerprint-sized faces and slowly stippling in the patterns of their clothes. And how better to spend rainy early spring days than using an etching needle to help tendrils of ivy to creep up the sides of this boat, wrap themselves around its mast, or spread out between the plants growing on this shore?
Of course, at the same time I was growing the ivy, I was sharpening the knife and sickle that would be used to cut back that ivy and possibly free the boat.
Because of the slow way in which I work, I always seem to have a backlog of ideas for things I am meaning to make but haven't yet found time for. Since at least last autumn lots of vegetal people have been creeping into my thoughts, so expect more of them in the future.
Though perhaps this really isn't so different for me after all.