Process notes for Experiment 1. The idea: A continuation of my initial project – to learn how the tools and materials (lino and different types of ink) behave. For my contribution to the Posted/Unposted exhibition.
One. An edition of 40 decent linoleum prints is hard to achieve. Especially when the DIY press applies uneven pressure to the block and when the printmaker is hardly a printmaker (yet).
Two. Remember the name of the paper you’re printing on.
Three. Always do a minimum of one test run.
Four. Umber ink, please dry! I hear extenders and retarders provide such qualities. How about just making ink capable of drying without additives?
Five. Pre-made coloured envelopes are really expensive. Custom made ones take time.
Six. Do envelopes need glue to be considered envelopes?
Seven. Damn proper linoleum with its canvas backing-lint sticking to my ink rollers.
Eight. Do not number and sign the edition until all parts of the project are completed.
Nine. A proper printmaker never cuts, only tears (paper).
Ten. Need paper-registration practice. Cheat-code: Carve crop marks directly into the block!
Eleven. Perfection was never the goal. Process rather. And seeing it through. Phew!
Work in progress. Showing first at the Bergen Art Book Fair in October along with many other artists and designers through the Nordic Letterpress collaboration. The exhibition is titled Posted/Unposted.
Mette Ambeck / Jim Berggren / Nina Bondeson / Birna Einarsdóttir / Leifur Ýmir Eyjólfsson (Reykjavik Letterpress) / Tova Fransson / Edward Johansson (Ahvaland) / Ane Thon Knutsen / Bent Kvisgaard / Imi Maufe / Sakari Männistö / Lina Nordenström / Ottar Ormstad / Tina Jonsbu / Viba Bredahl, Hjördis Haack, Nina Kleivan, Jesper Palm, Anna Marie Ploug, Carina Zunino (Svends Bibliotek) / Barbro Ravander / Johan Solberg / Göta Svensson (Tryckkammaren) / Richard Årlin
First print test through the mangle press resulted in an edition of 9 cards total decent enough to put in the post. It was good to see the setup actually working in practice! Silver mixed with black ink.
Blissful bookmaking. Today I bought this 1870’s book press measuring approximately 280 x 250mm. Ideal for smaller relief prints.
I had been reading online about converting old mangles (clothing-presses) into etching/relief presses. In principle, their function is identical. Spare mangles are abundant, whereas etching presses are scarce, both used and new.
Buying a new press would be an exaggeration, as they are both expensive and difficult to transport. I had no luck asking people where I could find one in desperate need of a new home, nor did I get any results from ads. Since I already was in possession of two mangles, the choice was simple.
I compiled a list of items to to make the conversion complete:
- a bed plate made from a thin, strong material to fit between the two rollers
- wool printmaking blankets (at least two)
- a table/workbench to mount the mangle onto