The Artists Process
My studio is filled with specimens collected from the bush and sea. Clear air, gorgeous skies, beach and bush all provide a never-ending palette to draw from.
One of my favourite specimens is the Banksia, a stunning Australian native flower with many different varieties, colours and textures.
When I am in nature, I find great peace and connection. There are many layers to explore. Tranquility and contemplation are what I hope to convey in my work.
A few years back I was strolling on the beach with my father-in-law and we found a perfectly preserved weedy sea dragon. I took it home, photographed it, but didn't have time to draw it that day. The following day I went to make a sketch and found the sea dragon was missing. Searching around the house, I sadly found its head in my dog's bed. He had eaten it like a chew bar. Needless to say, I cried! A find like this is so incredibly rare. As It turned out, our neighbors had found a similar specimen at the same time. We believe a storm had washed them up onto the shore. They were kind enough to allow me a few hours at their home to draw and capture a fair likeness...a better ending to my sad story!
THE SOLAR PLATE PROCESS
Using the non-toxic process of solar plate etching, I utilises the same sun my specimens are found and drawn in. It is a quick, simple, non-toxic etching process, using the sun and water instead of acids and solvents to etch the plate.
I process my existing pen and ink drawings with a plate made of polymer film with a steel backing which is then exposed to the sun then developed in the local rain water.
This printmaking process is called 'Intaglio' meaning a design incised or engraved into a material
Solar plates are inked up and printed by hand on BFK Rives paper, a sustainable cotton rag, often running handmade paper through the press up to 20 times to produce a one-off piece of art.
Mixing inks, inked solarplate & Trudy inking a solarplate.
... The making of the solo exhibition OCEANUS
The process of solar plate etching is really a wonderful way to make prints. The fact it is non-toxic, contains no acid and uses the sun and water to etch, really plays on my sensitivity for the environment.
Often one print will be run through my press over 20 times.
I hope you enjoy a window into my world.
Port Jackson Press Print Gallery
84 Smith Street, Collingwood, Victoria, Australia, 3066
Artist Talk & Demonstration
Thank you to the amazing ADAM BEN EZRA for kindly contributing MUSIC for my video.