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Thursday, October 18, 2012

Figure 13 in shades of grey

Last Thursday I have a great day in the print shop...I was trying out some new ink colors, Payne's Grey and Graphite (Graphite grey is made with pure graphite and has the lovely sheen of a pencil lead). I worked on one plate only, Fig. 13, The 13th Sign and made several prints. Some of the best have a little bit of red added.
Fig. 13, the 13th Sign with Grey Abstraction, 10"x8" Solarplate etching
 I love the minimalist palette and that one of the plates, when inked with graphite looks like a a drawing on the paper rather than a print.
Fig. 13, The 13th Sign with Grey Spiral, 10"x8", mono print with solarplate etching  

Fig. 13, The 13th Sign, The Red Serpent
Hybrid print, 12" x 10" 

The print on the bottom has a tannic acid toned cyanotype on the paper under an etching and monotype. I love the split-tone effect of the cyanotype where it turns from blue-grey to bright blue, emphasizing the red serpent shape.

Now I have at least 5 versions of each now I'm working on a new solarplate for Fig. 18. Today I spent most of the day at the print lab making more test plates. Luckily someone had a nifty little tool: a Stouffer's 21-step guide. So I got to make little solarplate strips to test the exposure times for the time of day and time of year. Despite that, I still couldn't make a decent test plate. The film I was using had a very dense image, so I kept lengthening the exposure times....but things were just not working, so I tried a mid-tone grey image and also had a too-dark result. By that time, it was getting pretty late in the day and the angle of the sun was not ideal. But I hope I can do a few more tests on Sunday and have new proofs by Monday! The good things is: I'm learning a huge amount about how to work with films and solarplates, so even though I don't have a new image yet, I am wiser.
Some of my test plates and proofs
Have a great weekend!

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