My journey into printmaking started with my first lino cut attempt at a local arts course. The course was provided by MBC Ceramics and took place in my home town of Stanley. The tutor Emily was fantastic and I loved every minute of the course. I still really like this fish design even though it looks a bit ‘rustic’ shall we say and I’ve done loads of linocuts since.
I tried a few different versions of this design before the penny dropped – in printmaking you have to think in reverse. Coming from a photography background it helped me to think of the design on the lino as a negative. If you want a line to appear then you need to remove everything around it for it to stand out. With that in mind I set about reversing my image.
I was much happier with the level of detail in the image after making this change. What has been great about the course is having some dedicated time to sit and focus on creating artwork, without the distractions of everyday life. There was also the chance to meet a varied bunch of people on the course and be inspired by what they are creating too. It’s amazing to see what 8 different people can create starting with the same sheet of lino!
On the theme of fish, I’m definitely glad I took the plunge of starting this course as it’s opened a whole new artistic avenue for me, as well as giving me more confidence to try new things. I really enjoy the lino print process – carving the design out is very therapeutic for some reason (some people call it mindfulness, I call it whittling!). I also love the big reveal of when you peel the paper off to see what your finished design looks like. Can’t wait to see what other techniques I’ll learn on this course!