From life to linoprint

I have a fascination with the architecture of nature and how to capture it in a print. I love the constraints of printmaking and working through the process to create a piece of work. The challenge of translating my sketches into a block, knowing that the lines and areas I carve will infact be the negative space and what I leave behind will be flushed with colour.

Carving the block itself is a meditative process. And the flowing lines and curves found in nature lend themselves beautifully to the gouge cutting through either the rubber or traditional linoleum that I use.

Rolling the ink across the carved block for the first time is a special moment. I use 100% cotton rag paper and place this down onto the block. Each print is burnished by hand with a heavy glass baren, transferring the ink from the block to the paper.

There is a great sense of anticipation when taking the first proof because you never quite know how the block will work as a print.

I love the satisfaction of creating multiple images – all very subtly different – hanging to dry in a row. For me, this heightens the sense of capturing that little piece of nature for myself. I don’t want a perfect print. Exact facsimiles are not my aim. Each print is unique, a product of the hand that made it. Just as every leaf on a tree is unique. The pressure, coverage and texture of the ink is different each time and I celebrate that. A successful print for me has just the right amount of ‘imperfections’ to make it special.