I received a couple of emails on my two terriers blogspot blog asking for more posts about the process that I go through to produce my prints, so here goes again and I hope it makes some sense. To begin with here is an illustration of my first ever woodcut produced on a piece of old pine plank when I was at art school in Newcastle and I can nail that down to the autumn of 1964. That’s a fact that I find quite scary, how time passes. Anyway there is also a page from a sketchbook used at the time showing the first part of the image gathering process which was done in the area that was once known as the iron mining area in Cleveland which is now known as Teesside. Underneath is the adapted image that was cut and finally printed on home-made paper, sadly the original block is now long gone. The second print featured below, is a current work in progress that should be finished in the next week or so allowing, as always, for the inevitable family commitments. The same process is followed but using Lino instead of wood with an initial drawing produced ‘on location’ but in this case the sketch book work is more of a visual note, or shorthand if you like, of the elements that will appear in the final print with all of the detail and colour being carried in my head and then applied and amended later. The Boss says this a bad habit to get into but it works for me so I’m happy with my ‘visual shorthand system’.
Left to right. Shorthand image and reference sketch book, the first two ‘undercoat’ colours printed and the drawn-up key block that will carry the line work and is the key for registration.