I hope to communicate something of the animal’s unique essence in each image. I enjoy working on the form and shape of the animal, aiming to give it a three dimensional quality on the paper. I often observe it from unusual angles, using strong lines and gestural marks to capture aspects of its spirit and character and movement.
I aim to achieve this by sketching in charcoal and by using the monotype technique with printing ink or paint. I particularly enjoy the directness and fluidity of the mark-making achievable with monotype. It is the most spontaneous, painterly method of printmaking. My prints are created by moving the ink around or wiping it off a surface that is then put through my press to produce a ‘one-off’ image. This image cannot be editioned. Essentially it is a printed painting.
I have also begun to use collagraphs to produce my images. A collagraph is created by sticking different textures and materials to a plate, inking it up using the relief or intaglio method and transferring the image to paper using the press. The resulting image has an embossed effect and overall feeling of solidity. Editions of prints are possible using this printmaking method.
While collagraph can be something of a contrast to monotypes, the end results of both processes can never be assured and it’s the surprising, unexpected nature of these techniques that appeals to me.