Tuesday, 30 December 2014

Perry Orchard

The next wallpaper design is called Perry Orchard and is based on a morning drawing in an old orchard full of cider and perry trees.  James Marsden was kind enough to allow me to draw in their orchard at Gregg's Pit, Much Marcle, Herefordshire... it came with a lovely lunch of homemade soup!

The tree that I chose to draw is a variety called 'The Winter Burgundy' and it is a majestic old tree in the hedge at the far left corner of the orchard.

From here I planned the design and laid it out onto the lino, it is now nearly cut and will be ready for me to take it to the studio to pull a proof on the Offset Litho Proofing Press.  I'm looking forward to printing it in a fresh rosy Perry Pear colour.
I've included a couple of birds that are partly inspired by William Morris' 'Strawberry Thief'.

Hand Printed Wallpaper from hand cut Lino

 Four wallpaper designs photographed ready for the new website which will go live in February.

The designs may be printed in any colour that we are able to mix from the inks available.

Tuesday, 2 December 2014

From little Acorns mighty Oak trees grow.....

Having produced a series of pencil drawings from Oak branches and also made some mono prints using leaves.   These monoprints have fantastic detail and are rather beautiful in their own right.  From there I have gone on to design and cut the Lino into the next wallpaper design.

So, the Lino is cut and ready to be hand printed when I am next in the studio.  

Thursday, 23 October 2014

Leaf Prints: a visual storehouse for the Winter

Over the past few days I've been making leaf prints using the etching press.  Autumn is here and the leaves are fast disappearing from the trees,  I'm conscious that it won't be long until the flora that I love to draw from will have died back for the winter.

So, I've been collecting leaves, inking and printing them, so that during the winter months I have a store of beautiful images to work from.  I'm always amazed at how incredible these leaf prints are. The design and detail is phenomenal.... nature will always be a far better artist than I will ever be!

I collected these leaves from Westonbirt Arboretum, Lovells Vineyard and from the beautiful woods just up the lane, which is the outermost fringes of the Forest of Dean

Tuesday, 8 July 2014

1st design for wallpaper - Lupins

I'm busy transferring a wallpaper design of Lupins to a huge piece of lino...   I have no idea how long it will take to cut, I'm setting a two week deadline!

    I'm really looking forward to printing it as I love Lupins, they have fantastic architectural structure and will look fantastic as wallpaper.

It's the second design I've transferred to lino but decided not to cut the other one which was of 
Wild Sweet Bryony, I wasn't that enthused to start cutting that one.  Also I had transferred it in reverse which I will not want when I get the Offset Press.  It wasn't the design/drawings just the fact I had reversed it.  I'm not good at having to repeat anything!  So I'm having faith that a press will materialise and in the meantime I will cut the right way around and proof it 'back to front'.

I was in the process of buying an appropriate press to print the wallpaper.  The press I have in the garage is an etching press and although it can be adapted to print Relief it isn't suitable for wallpaper (my press will be for sale shortly - it is big, just in case you are interested! and will need professional removal - also have an electric top loading kiln if anyone is interested, also for sale).  

A suitable press for what I am doing now had just come up and I've lost it to someone else, feeling really disappointed and praying that another one will come up from somewhere.  They are fairly few and far between!  It's so frustrating to think how many of them must have been scrapped and melted down.

I'll hold onto the promise that someday I will print my artistic designs and crafts in gold, silver and bronze.  I think this design, printed onto Duck Egg Blue, in Bronze or Silver would look amazing. 

must get on - plenty of cutting to do!
more photos to follow...

Friday, 27 June 2014


I'm submitting these mixed media drawings for a friends exhibition.  I really enjoyed doing them and if I can 'find the time' it's something I'd like to do more of and at the same time try to loosen up a bit in my use of materials.  Recently I've been drawing, drawing, drawing from Botanic matter.... lots of research from which to produce designs.  I'll post when I have something that is printed as the drawings are all produced in pencil and don't photograph well.

Sunday, 25 May 2014

... her words speak volume!

giving up everything
my hungry ghost of hopefulness

giving up everything
and haunted by wanting less

giving up everything
my cursed search for meaning

Natalie Merchant - Natalie Merchant (her new album 2014)

Saturday, 26 April 2014

morning thoughts

I often wake with my morning thoughts throwing clarity on life... these thoughts sometimes become a little blurred with the maelstrom of daily life!

Wednesday, 9 April 2014

portrait drawing

I was having a rummage through my photos and found this portrait in pastels... maybe I should go back to these classes, I did enjoy them!

Monday, 24 February 2014

Orchard for Rural Media 'Life Loves to Change'

Last summer I was asked to produce a piece of printmaking for the Rural Media Company's film 'Life Loves to Change'.   I was commissioned to produce a lino-print and a length of fabric based on a generic impression of a Herefordshire orchard.  

So, I went from the brief and produced a tree that stood with it's root on view and repeated it across the fabric so that it could be filmed with apples being embroidered onto the surface.  I had not printed Lino onto fabric and used a repeat before and it was great fun.  It was all a bit 'Heath Robinson' working on the kitchen table and burnishing the back of the Lino with a wooden spoon.  I was delighted with the result, as were the Rural Media Company.

Monday, 10 February 2014

Printer's Pie

John Randle of the Whittington Press asked if I would like to write an article about Tilley Letterpress Printing and produce a print for this years Matrix, which will be edition 32.   It seemed fitting to use the idea I had some time ago based on 'Printer's Pie'.  Printer's Pie is the phrase used when type falls out of the composing stick and becomes a mix up of letters, which is a bit of a proverbial pain to sort out!

Over the past month I have cut the Lino and printed the final edition of just over 700 prints consisting of four layers/colours, so here is a preview,  if you would like your very own version please apply to The Whittington Press to purchase a copy of Matrix.  A journal about Fine Print Presses and traditional Letterpresses around the world.

Sunday, 26 January 2014

Prints for Ledbury Poetry Festival 2014

I was totally thrilled to be asked again by Victoria Patch to produce prints and images to be used in this years Ledbury Poetry Festival 2014 publications....

It took me a while to formulate some ideas, and then even longer to actually produce the work.  Christmas somehow got in the way of my creative flow... note to self, avoid Christmas, it's not good for creativity!
But at last it has come together and they are really pleased with the prints and images I have created for them.... as am I!

Sometimes it is better when projects take a while to mature.  That prolonged gestation period somehow pays off in the final analysis.