Central Fife Open Studios is opening its collective doors today for the first time - but will hopefully become an annual event on the Art Calendar.
Lots of local artists are taking part - see the website for the full list http://centralfifeopenstudios.moonfruit.com
My studio will be open for the next three weekends from 10 - 4, where you can see a variety of printmaking techniques - lino/relief prints, collographs, monoprints and lithographs.

Come along and see how the prints are made by hand on my etching press, see the prints and the plates they are printed from. All prints are for sale.
 The weather is great, so come and enjoy a day by the seaside!!

Yesterday was  a very productive and enjoyable day in my Studio. I thought I'd just print my three plate Collagraph in shades of grey, but whilst waiting for the first layer to dry I got to thinking about the British Miniprint and cut some lino, traced one of my sketches onto it and started cutting. Cutting lino is one of my favourite ways to lose a few hours, listening to radio 4 whilst working out the layers. Having two prints on the go at once meant I was printing happily all day.  I don't think I even noticed it get dark and when I did glance at the clock it was after midnight! Now that must be the definition of a day that went well.
The Collagraph is 22.5 x 21 cm and printed in waterbased inks and the Lino Reduction Print 8 x 10 cm
I have been spending more time in my studio with the good weather, trying different things on my small (29 x 35 cm) Tofko relief press.  I worked more on my dog linoprints, adding elements and trying different compositions.  I printed some in multiple colours, but decided in the end that I preferred the black and white prints.

I have also been working on small Collagraphs - with Leicester's "Small print, Big Impression" in mind.  I have produced four plates so far using a mountboard base varnished a few times to seal it.  The images are made from scraps of thick printmaking paper which I drew into with a hard grade pencil or a scalpel before sealing them with more varnish.  I printed them as relief with Speedball waterbased inks with extender added.  Having printed them individually I then tried overprinting two, three and four images using a registration board.  You can see a couple of the prints I like below
A bit late I know, but Fife Dunfermline Printmakers Workshop is having an opening at Abbot House in Dunfermline on Friday 18th June from 6 - 8.30 of  Members Prints. During the day on  Saturday we will be giving people the opportunity to come along and make a print on our "travelling press". Should be lots of fun and of course children are welcome to have a go along with the adults. Do pop in if you're in Dunfermline.

I feel very fortunate today as my birthday is coming up, but my present arrived early - a new digital camera! My aged  trusty little Pentax wasn't quite up to the job of recording my prints without bending the edges. So my new  Panasonic Lumix TZ9 was my choice after much research on the internet - actually I'd decided on a TZ7, but was offered a very good price on the newer, richer in features TZ9. I can't wait to get out taking lots of photographs.
It has been a while since I posted anything here, but I have still been working away on my Collagraphs and even a small Lino print. The Collagraphs have been proving troublesome and I have  been forced to fiddle, adjusting tone and detail in search of the  image that was in my head in the first place.  As always printmaking is not a straightforward process and comprimises are inevitably made. For the last month or so I have been working on plates that measure 20 x 17 cm aiming for the Finnish exhibition and now I feel the need to work on something larger. I have some large sheets of lino ready to work with and my sketchbooks are full of images I'm itching to develop into prints... most likely reduction prints again. I can't resist them.
I've posted a few of the prints I've produced below. The first is printed in Sepia oil based ink which I felt was too "black". The next I added red to warm up the Sepia, better I thought. The third is the initial inverted "line drawing" stage lino print.
Back at the Workshop in Dunfermline today (FDPW Fife and Dunfermline Printmakers Workshop)  finishing off my reduction print. It's been a long process and I'm pleased to be finshed. I'm still too close to know if I'm happy with the results, but I'll put them away for a week or so then look at them again with a fresh eye.

Next planned project is the twelve days of Christmas. I've been doing a lot of drawing, but haven't decided on the final images, or even the size I'm going to do them. First thoughts were to do them all small, maybe 150 x 100, but now I'm thinking a variety of sizes might be more interesting. Give me more scope when I get to the higher numbers too. I thought I knew the order of the days, but I found on the Internet that the order seems to have changed. When did that happen?
My "known" order was 9  Drummers drumming - now it seems to be  9  Ladies dancing
                                             10  Pipers piping                  - now                            10  Lords leaping
                                             11  Ladies dancing               - now                             11  Pipers piping
                                             12  Lords leaping                 - now                             12  Drummers drumming
Which version to choose? Anyone know which, if any, is correct?

I'll work on the images first I think.