These are some of the images produced over three short workshops yesterday with students of Saint Columba’s College (secondary school). We explored the technique of drypoint using perspex plates (or plexi). The main focus of this activity was to explore drawing through an intaglio process, concentrating on the depth of the lines, pressure and composition.
These are some of the prints created by 23 students during my printmaking workshops as part of their Illustration and Picture Book Course, run by Adrienne Geoghegan here in Dublin. After looking at the portfolio and a full demo about how drypoint printmaking works, the students prepared their drawings based on their own interests and personal projects. Then in the following session, they worked on their plates using only drypoints and experimenting with the different pressures one can apply on the tool to get (the beautiful and unique) tonal differences. We worked together for 2 sessions of 3 hours each and the aim of the workshop was to give the students the general idea of the process. Apart from 1 student, all the others were trying this technique for the very first time.
For (absolute) beginners, this course covers hard and soft ground, aquatint and some introduction to colour printing and chine-collé techniques. My teaching focus is the creative development of images through drawing. The students bring plenty of photographs and sketch books so we can discuss their ideas, aims and how to translate the images into the graphic language of printmaking.
This course takes places once a week for 6 evenings plus one whole Saturday at Black Church Print Studio, Dublin.
This print workshop was based in the exhibition The Coëtivy Hours on display in the Chester Beatty Library. The Coëtivy Hours is an illuminated manuscript from the 15th century richly decorated with floral scrolls, human, apes, lions, birds, family arms and supernatural figures. Prigent de Coëtivy commissioned a workshop in Paris to create the masterpiece to mark his marriage to Marie de Rais.
We started with a full demo of the drypoint process followed by a visit to the exhibition where participants could get ideas for their own images and sketch some drawings. They created their own plates, using perspex (a thick acetate), and drypoint. For printing the plates we worked with a range of colours and chine-collé technique. Here’s a little taste of what we were up to:
Last Saturday I had the pleasure to work with two enthusiastic groups (12-14 years and 15-17 years)at Chester Beatty Library. The workshops covered the techniques of chiné-colle and drypoint exploring the theme of fantasy and imagination. It was most enjoyable to see how dedicated the teenagers were to create images and mixing colours to express their feelings, dreams and perceptions of the world. All of them were new to intaglio and despite of finding it challenging, they also found it equally rewarding!
Here’s the documentation of this year’s collaboration (this is our 6th year!) with Adrienne Geoghegan’s Illustration and Picture Book Artists. Exploring the technique of drypoint, artists were invited to create their own works based on the theme of their own choice. Each group worked over 2 sessions of 2.5h. They were encouraged to investigate the graphic possibilities of the medium, hatching and cross-hatching, textures, incisions and composition, being always aware that results will very much depend on the pressure applied on the metal point…!