Sunday, March 30, 2008

Adventures in Lithography, Part 1

Last year, I was introduced to a guy who is now a great print buddy, Pat Hill, who lives in Mill Bay on Vancouver Island, just north of Victoria. We met through the Printmakers Only Group, and he invited us over to his studio for a visit. He's got a fully stocked stone lithography studio (Pal Press) in his basement, and I arranged a week of tuition with him last spring. There were some interesting interruptions (goats being born and needing some serious attention not the least of which), but I did learn some stuff, and successfully editioned four prints.

I put all four into the Summer Gallery last year at the Federation of Canadian Artists on Granville Island and sold one of each! It was a great event for me, and Pat was very happy that the lithos were so successful.

Dad had a falling down cabin on his property (which has now completed its descent into disintegration). I created a conte drawing of the cabin from a photo Dad took in 1995 a number of years ago; Dad & Judy bought that drawing and it's been hanging above their bed ever since. I really like the image, and wanted to try again, and knew that it would be perfect for a stone lithograph.

This year, I had fewer interruptions, and worked on my own for the first part of the week. I used lithographic crayons entirely. Lithographic crayons are greasy in proportion to the value produced when used on the stone. This is important, because something that makes a black mark doesn't necessarily translate to the same value (darkness) on the print. The best media to use on the stone are those that have proportional grease content to their "blackness". The grease content matters because it impacts the chemical reaction in the stone surface which causes the lithographic print to succeed. Here's the development of the image on the stone (the dimensions of the stone are approximately 18"x25"):

WIP - drawing on the stone

WIP - drawing on the stone

WIP - drawing on the stone


Beth said...

It's gorgeous. I grew up in the Appalachians and have a serious weakness for old cabins. I'm looking forward to seeing the finished prints, and your other endeavors from the week! Great work.

Anonymous said...

Nice work, Im sure you would not have a problem selling many more.
All the best and keep it up!