I would love to show you around my warm cosy studio space tucked away in the attic. Every spot really is used fully and it has different areas for each process such as designing, carving, inking up plates, drying, signing, packing, wrapping and storing artworks. There is a lot that goes on in this tiny space and I thought I would share it with you.
This is the whole studio, I can only stand up in the middle of the room so the inking table is at the far end as I like to be stood up for this part! Otherwise, I am generally wheeling around on the red chair (which I fell in love with as soon as I saw it) it was the first thing I bought when I moved into the attic studio.
My wooden desk is where I design the artwork, tear the paper, carve and sign. This area is an ink-free zone, which is important to have in any workspace. I surround myself with prints, notes, colour palettes and quotes and use the sloped ceiling as a place of inspiration. I couldn’t live without the daylight lamp on the desk that means I can work through the darker evenings, as well a doubling up for product photoshoots.
The inky area is the fun bit of the studio, with palette knives, rollers and tubes of ink, everything is ready for turning the carved lino into a piece of art. I use a marble slab to mix up inks and get them ready for rolling.
The Baren is a Japanese printmaking tool that I use to burnish (firmly rub) the back of a sheet of paper to lift ink from the lino printing block. This lives in the area of the studio reserved for pulling prints- where I can stand up!
Prints are hung to dry from the ceiling and the drying process varies depending on how many layers have been added and how much drying medium has been added. I like to leave the reduction prints with more layers for a couple of weeks.
Prints are always signed and editioned in pencil, and any misprints are removed from the edition. For storage, prints get placed flat between sheets of acid-free tissue paper, and at this stage, I scan and upload the artwork to keep a record for my portfolio and to upload it onto my website or Etsy.
When I wrap prints for sale, I use acid-free mountboard to keep them flat and in good condition and add cellophane. It is nice to be able to see the deckled edge of the paper so prefer this method.
I switched to biodegradable, compostable cellophane this year to reduce the impact on the environment, and am sourcing cards using recycled materials.
Thank you for taking the time to have a look around my space and learn a bit more about what goes on here! if you want to see more I created a video for the Derbyshire open arts youtube channel.