Saturday, 17 February 2018

Pebble collagraph experiments

After last weeks experiments with monoprint and mixed media exploring shape and tone I decided I wanted to look at tonal qualities in the pebbles a little more. Collagraph printing is perfect for this. I keep a box of textured materials to use for making collagraph plates some manmade, some organic and had fun speading out all the odds and ends and adhering them with acrylic medium to pebble shaped mountboard to make plates and using the same medium as a top layer to varnish.

Below are the plates with a key to what I used and a couple of the first test sheets that I printed up.

Collagraph plates and experiments with a key to materials used   ©2018LisaLeQuelenec

My favourites from this collection are the rough sandpaper and the dried outer leaves of the sweetcorn husk - I really can't remember how I aquired that but will have to source some more the texture printed beautifully the more it was inked up.

Collagraph experiment samples with added mixed media   ©2018LisaLeQuelenec

Once dry I worked into some of the samples with watercolour, inks and pencils. More ideas started to flow as I began photographing with actual pebbles and background papers (these form part of my digital sketchbook).

In the bottom of my textured materials box I found an old plate that I had made but had never printed. I had been thinking about edges and rockpools and the flotsom and jetsom left behind by the tide. It seemed to be resurfacing just at the right time - perfect for this project - so I inked it up and took a few prints just to see what it was like. It had been made with various handmade papers, string, tin foil, the netting from a bag of fruit and a bit of sand for good measure.

Collagraph plate (detail)  ©2018LisaLeQuelenec

The plate on the left and the first proof print on the right   ©2018LisaLeQuelenec

The tinfoil pebble shapes left no impression or variation in ink tone but the textures from the netting and string worked beautifully as did the texture from some of the handmade paper. You can see the cardboard from the base plate had, in a previous life, been the cover of an old sketchbook and I had left the holes from the ring binding in. I quite like the contrast of the regular pattern with the organic shapes made by the other materials. The netting I think worked the best, the holes undulating as sections were stretched and contracted when the plate was made. They look like very delicate dip pen and ink marks.

Once these were dry I worked back into one with watercolour and added collage pebble shapes cut from some of the samples made earlier. (You can see the lovely texture made by that sweetcorn leaf second pebble down.)  I seem to be obsessing with spilling out of the frame at the moment and layering.... This test piece is something I think I will be developing further - time to ponder.....

The Pebble Project    collagraph, collage and mixed media test piece   ©2018LisaLeQuelenec

Wednesday, 14 February 2018

A lucky find

Sometimes things just jump out at you when you walk along the beach.....Happy Valentines.

Pebbles found on the shore   ©2018LisaLeQuelenec
Pebbles found on the shore   ©2018LisaLeQuelenec

Thursday, 8 February 2018

Pebble experiments with monoprint and mixed media

The visual research and experimentation is always a very enjoyable aspect of a new project. I relish the chance to explore ideas and play with techniques and materials without any preconceived ideas of the results. It is something that I want to do a lot more of this year.

Three pebble monoprints with mixed media experiments in three stages ©2018LisaLeQuelenec

To develop further this pebble project I began with three monoprints as shown in the top row above;

The first one on the left made by inking a plate and adding two masks and a third mask inked in a deeper tone.

The central print was made by running the same plate without any further additions of ink or masks - this is called a ghost print and just utilises any ink not removed from the plate on the first run through the press.

The third print shown on the right is the same print with no ink added but the masks were removed leaving behind an inky line made when ink caught on the edges of the paper masks.

cut outs from monoprints for collage... ©2018LisaLeQuelenec

From other monoprints I cut more pebble shapes (I also had the original masks that I had kept) these all had lovely variations in textures and tones to further add to the mix. I started placing them within the three compositions, also leaving a shape escaping the confines of the border. Balance and contrast in tones and scale were my main focus here and when the arrangement felt right I adhered them in. This is the stage in the middle row.

In the third stage, on the bottom row, I added more shapes, tone and line by drawing into the compositions. As I worked I was reminded of visits I have made to draw in the Barbara Hepworth Museum and Garden at St.Ives. I must go back again soon. It is well worth a visit if you are down that way, the garden in beautiful and a great setting to see her work in.

Seaworn I   monoprint and mixed media 17x23cm    ©2018LisaLeQuelenec

Seaworn II   monoprint and mixed media 17x23cm    ©2018LisaLeQuelenec

Seaworn III   monoprint and mixed media 17x23cm    ©2018LisaLeQuelenec

Reproduction prints of the set of three are available in the Pebble Project section on RedBubble.

Thursday, 1 February 2018

A pebble repeat pattern

Pebble study in watercolour   21x15cm approx   ©LisaLeQuelenec2017

I love the markings on this pebble so much and just had to continue playing with it for a while. I thought it had the makings of a good repeat pattern.

Pebble repeat I   ©2018LisaLeQuelenec

After scanning and editing in photoshop I experimented with different layouts and combinations finally settling on this motif.
I like the graphic qualities of it and so decided to convert it to black and white.

I have added it to my RedBubble collection where it is available on a number of products which you can see here.

A few of the products that the pattern is available on via RedBubble   ©2018LisaLeQuelenec