Thursday, April 21, 2011

Facebook-itis

For Paint Party Friday: This is not a painting, but since the question for this week is about how we cope with technical or natural disasters, I'm posting this litho, the first I've done on my own. Litho is one technical challenge after another, and it seems like almost the whole piece is in response to what went wrong and how can I save it? I do the same thing in paint, but it is rarely as crucial, since paintings can be changed so easily. In this one, curse me for a novice, I didn't know that you are supposed to wash the plate with citric acid before you draw. The result of not washing was that the tusche formed little dots everywhere it was applied. Not the classical elegant tusche texture I was looking for! But, I incorporated the dots into the design, by making the loose nuts and bolts in the background. So my answer is, work with what you've got. Art is a large part problem solving, right?


For IF: Lesson
Boy, did I learn some lessons on this one! Mainly, that it takes patience and intuition to make a good litho, but also that lots of things, like ink viscosity, room temperature, press setting and tons more details can make the difference between a fair print and a mess.

One thing is for sure, real lithographers, people who do it every day like my friend Catherine Chauvin, are amazing iron people. On litho days, I go home completely whupped, because it is such a physical printing process. Catherine is the real deal; she is a Tamarind trained master printer. A true iron woman.

Original post:
I was finally able to make a decent litho from a plate printed on an etching press. It was touch and go, because the day was warm and my ink was very soft, but I managed. I'm convinced that litho requires years of experience to really master. My first tusche was too light and this one is a bit dark. Maybe the 3rd time would be the charm.
I might get back to it, and I'm glad that I got the CAC equipped and up and running for litho, but I'm putting a bookmark in this process for now. As part of my M.F.A., I feel I need to learn all of the usual printmaking methods so that I could teach them if I need to. So this summer, in addition to working on the quilts (I think I have a new one cooking) I'll try a color-reduction woodcut, and in the fall, maybe serigraphy.

16 comments:

Connie said...

Beautiful.

Lynette said...

Thanks!

Mary Hysong said...

In spite of your difficulites, it is a nice print. I don't have print making experience unless you count potatoe printing in grade school! ;0 happy PPF!

Christine said...

nice work, it looks like a challenging piece!

EVA said...

A fitting post on technical challenges!! I like this very much! I don't know much about lithographs so it was a very informative post too. Thanks!

Gloria said...

This was a learning post and great work. It looks beautiful.

Netty said...

I know nothing at all about this sort of art but am sure its terribly difficult. I love your piece. Annette x

Annabelle said...

Interesting post ; always admired lithographers for their enduring work and intricate detail. Your work is lovely all the same.

Annabelle

brendathour said...

Wow, I'm impressed!

Rosie Kaplan said...

It looks great. was just talking to a friend who said litho printing just all took too long so good on you for patience.

BahamaDawn said...

amazing artwork!

Terrie said...

I don't know anything about making a litho but it looks stunning to me. And with all the technical difficulties, you should be proud of the result!

Heather said...

I love this. Very interesting!

Yvonne said...

It looks so difficult but it turned out beautiful.

Andrea C said...

Whoa, this is superb x

La Abela said...

I never made a lithograph, it must be hard but you still look great. Saludos