It is a technique that I didn’t think I’d ever do again. But since we did do it again in class I thought, what the heck, I’ll give it another try. So two nights before the class I decided to do a poppy, as the ones in my garden are so lovely right now. I found a botanical print that I liked and cut poppies and a seed pod out of some highly textured paper that I found at a craft store. I arranged them on a small piece of mat board, added some twine and beads for texture and built up the arrangement with more paper. I was totally digging the result, but with all things printmaking, you never know what you’re going to get until it goes through the press. You be the judge…
This is the plate at the end of the night’s work. You can see how well the texture of the paper worked, making the petals and leaves look so natural. What I didn’t do, and should have, is make a dry emboss, in other words, run the plate through uninked. I can still do this but I’ll need to give the plate a good cleaning and run it though on newsprint a few times to clean it. The plates are reusable as they are put together using acrylic medium. I don’t think they’d last forever, but it is nice to know that you can do a run, even if you’ll never get identical images.
This is the second run with the plate inked only in black (the first run was really really dark). I did two like this, both of which I will try coloring using watercolors once they dry. We use oil-based inks so they take a while to dry. This is good when you are in the studio as they stay open for the evening and you can play with it, but bad when you are trying to get them home without smudging them or are anxious to try a second technique over top.
I used multiple colors and a technique of my own making, e.g. using my little finger to apply color to the plate. There is a fancy name for this, which escapes me at the moment. The TA kept looking at me like I’d lost my mind, but the end result was awesome!
To be honest, after my last encounter with collographs, the TA was anxious that I have a good experience this time so was a bit worried when I started farting around. She really did have my best interest at heart. She hinted afterwards that this would make an amazing thank you gift for teachers and TA’s.