Such a lovely time of year - here I am sitting in the Autumn sunshine - what could be better?
Time to take to the woods, check out the leaves changing colour and forming slightly mushy piles to kick through, and catch the lovely rays of Autumn sunshine before we decide to hibernate in front of the fire for the winter (we have already started practising sitting in front of the fire though, just in case we had forgotten how!).
I've had a couple of commissions in the past weeks and now feel like I am re-emerging into the world, ready to be out doors as much as I can (when it isn't raining of course...) and ready to turn a few of my own ideas into lino prints. Have I made enough lino prints yet? Nope.
I love doing lino prints of big flocks of birds! Crows, starlings, swallows, fish ( I know they aren't birds, but a lino print of a shoal of fish crept up on me...) and now pigeons. Yay!
These feathery friends seemed to take all summer to cut out, but in reality they were all waiting patiently for me whilst I got distracted by sunshine, seaside and some really interesting beetles in the back garden.
Now they are editioned and cooing their way off to galleries and internet land most happily (and flappily).
It's the time of year when ripening veg invade the windowsills of our house and printmakers have to take second place!
The tomato plants all decided to get blight and 'Tomato Moths' at the same time and so we harvested the lot (a lot) and left the plants outside for the caterpillars to finish off! This means that every space has trays of tomatoes of every shade between green and red and I really hope they all go red as we still have some of last years green tomato chutney in the cupboard...
...and the pepper plants got really bad greenfly all of a sudden - it must be an end of season thing - so you can just see the fruits lying on the windowsill getting redder by the day...
...and the squashes (my not so secret favourite thing to grow and then stockpile along with the logs ready for winter) are just having a final warm indoor ripening session before being stored away ready for winter feasts that will be needed in the far distant future.
Oh, and I made some prints too. But really I'm more interested in the squashes and the stockpiling...
At the beginning of the month I spent a happy day running a couple of lino printing workshops at Papervillage in Bristol - oh what fun was had!!
Several people signed up for both workshops and so spent an entire Sunday lino cutting, which is a feat of endurance for the most seasoned printmaker, and they barely paused for a cup of tea so dedicated were they!
But hey, they left with bundles of prints and as some claimed to be complete non-arty beginners I think they did so well, many fine artworks completed.
What I always love is how unlike my work the work produced on courses I teach is!
Look at all the zingy colours... makes me think I should try out something that isn't black... the image above worked brilliantly as a block for rolling 3 different colours onto one block - no aligning or registration needed here!
In the morning we did mostly one colour prints (to get everyone started as it was a complete beginners course and you really need to play about a little to find out what the tools do and how to ink up and how different papers can print) - in the afternoon everyone could go in a different direction, some choosing to do multiple blocks, one brave person went straight for a reduction print and others played around with multi-coloured inking to get the results they were after...phew.
We are nearing the end of our household birthday season - one left to go - but I think the mono-printed british wildlife birthday bunting may survive for a while yet! Created for our Wildlife and Owl craft party...
How can we scrunch up those sweet little creatures??
We can't recycle foxes...maybe they will have to stay up until Christmas!!