Tuesday, 14 February 2012

Hand made cards

Cards are fun.I am trying out some ideas for different types of card.I think with hand made cards you need to be ahead of the game and have your cards prepared well in advance.I am thinking about getting a tabletop letterpress to give a professional look to the text on the card.

  We have like everyone else in northern Europe had a cold snap, not as bad as some but enough to keep us indoors.But despite this, the season is progressing and spring is just around the corner.These are some spring flowers from the garden,Mimosa,daffodils,twisted hazel and willow.This gives me another idea for an easter card and here are the preliminary sketches .

Thursday, 9 February 2012

work in progress

This is the proof print of my current project.Its definately a work in progress as the plate needs to go back in the etching tank for further work to darken areas of the plate.My etching times have gone all to pot as the temperature in my workshop where I carry out all the dirty jobs is only 10 degrees today so I need to extend my etching times whilst this cold snap persists.I still haven't got round to making my aquatint box so I am stuck with using acrylic spray paint.The results are interesting but it does require a delicate hand with the spray canister.I am toying with the idea of using my airbrush with a resist,I think speedball do one,I am going to give this a try as its possible to vary the density of the spray, introducing a graduated tonal value in one go,could be interesting.By the way this is the lighthouse at Plumanac on the pink granite coast in Brittany not far from where I live.To be continued.

Sunday, 29 January 2012

winter goings on

Getting back into a doing mode is difficult when the weather is so depressing.There is always the easy way out on a winters day to curl up in front of the fire and read a good book .Well there is a little respite in the weather so this morning we have ventured out on one of our favourite walks along the Leguer estuary,this is the towpath that starts in our nearest town of Lannion and follows the course of the river out to the sea .Today is very calm if not a bit threatening so waterproofs and hats are the order of the day.
The river winds it's way some 5 kilometers from the town before it reaches the sea.In times past ships would be towed up the river by teams of horses from a large holding pool at its mouth to unload their cargoes in the town. 

My workspace in my small den where I have been busy working on some new sketches .I very much want try and capture the weather conditions that we experience here on the coast in Brittany. 
We are in Paris this week looking after our French grandchildren so although its curtailed my printing work this week, is has given me the opportunity to visit some of the printing shops and to top up my printing supplies.

Thursday, 1 December 2011

Christmas cards

Christmas cards,well it's that time of year.When my two grandsons were here in September I asked them to produce a couple of sketches each of Christmas scenes,the English boy James is 8 and the French one Owen is 10.I reduced them and did the usual transfer to copper plates and then printed off a batch of each,I did end up hand colouring each card to save time,but i am resonably happy with the results.These cards will be for family and friends.    

Sunday, 30 October 2011

Spanish Break

 "The rain in Spain falls mainly on the plain".Well not today it dosen't,its falling on the Costa's.We are in Spain for an autumn holiday.One of my family has a holiday apartment in Calpe so we have driven down from Brittany to spend a few weeks escaping the worst of the weather further north.It hasn't worked today and rain and strong winds are predicted this week

 This is what we expect to see in Spain at this time of the year,warm sunny weather and a chance to have a late swim.

This is the weekly market at Altea with the Sierra Bernia  in the background.An opportunity to buy that must have bag or pair of shoes,there are plenty to choose from here. 

How many different types of palm are there.I particularly like the bark on the trunks
I think I am going to
do some sketches with a view to doing a print when I get home.

Thursday, 8 September 2011

Trial Print

Now that the family have returned to their homes after the summer holidays I can get back to my printing.This is the old lighthouse at Nantouar not far from my house.It's now a holiday home and sits empty for most of the year,shame, I love this building it has so much character.
This is my trial print,whoop's just noticed that the "R" is round the wrong way.I haven't tried removing errors from the copper plate so this will be good experience.
I have done a bit of hand colouring just to get a feel for final result.I think i am going to do a pink background which might suit.
The aquatint is achieved by using acrylic car spray,just a dusting from about 20inches away.To be continued!

Monday, 22 August 2011


The family are here on holiday so not much is getting done .Both grandson's one French ,one English are ready for the fishing trip I promised them.Eager beavers. 

Ready to go

Preparing the dingy

I picked a nice calme day so it should have been good,its a shame that the fish didn't agree ,caught nothing! Never mind try another day.

Is'nt it about time I caught something?