I like to use a ‘key plate’ which has all of the details on, it can be printed by itself to give me a monochrome version of the artwork which I create a limited edition of. I adore the monochrome edition of tranquil and have made a limited edition of 10 prints on Masa paper. I love the crisp white paper and have chosen it specifically for this collection of artwork.
I then use this version to plan a colour version. for this one, I knew I wanted to add some gold as a stand alone pop of colour. The best way to do this is using a Jigsaw technique. This means cutting up a plate into sections so colours can be applied seperately. I like to use a softcut piece of lino for this as it is much easier to cut and reassemble than the battleship grey!
I put the gold layer on first, using my registration device to line up the parts corectly and then pritning onto the paper. This is the start of the colour version. I was pretty excited to see the gold glistning as I hung it up to dry. I needed to leave this overnight as i wanted this layer to dry a bit more than I usually allow, with it being metallic.
With the remaining pieces of jigsaw, I carved out the highlights before adding a light blue layer. I always find the ink looks much lighter on the plate than it prints so I need to take this into account. I use the other pieces of plate to make sure the figure lines up. its a bit like putting together a puzzle.
More of the plate is carved away, this is known as a recudtion method, as the surface area is graduclly reduced. I then popped on the green, the final layer of colour before the key plate.
This is all of the 3 layers together, all lined up to sit underneath the image from the 'key plate' which is the final layer to go down. I just have to trust that it will all line up and will work as i think it will. I usually work intuitively so dont have a clear plan when I start to work this way.... so the outcome is a surprise. (the think that i find most exciting about the whole process)
Once the last layer goes down the image is complete, This is my favourite part of the whole process.
The edition sizes of these pieces can seem quite random because there is some margin for error when lining up the plates and once its been carved there is no going back. I aim to have 10 but if you see less in the edition you know I have had a bit of a challenge creating it! Theres 8 in this edition... so there were some mishaps!