Having spent last week taking photographs in this amazing part of the UK battling with wind and rain, (images to follow soon), I am now back working on my prints. I am currently working on Noir Blanc Vivant, Black White Veer, and three Chinese equivalent symbols.....a print book project with Madeleine Samson in Quebec and Wah Wing Chan in Montreal. We will be incorporating each of our languages within this work.
Some sketches below using cyanotype imagery as reference in the first instance posted here earlier, ink drawings, carbon print drawing and a bit of photoshop to get some ideas flowing
So this is a shadow ink drawing of the monster seaweed collected on Cromarty beach
A carbon drawing taken from the cyanotype of the bleached beach plant
Working sketch of possible print, the red is a bit too heavy I think. I am considering making a woodcut and embossing the first print and then placing the beach plant in different places.......possibly with monoprint...just mulling over the possibilities
A sequence of three....still very much in the embryo stage, I want to get an interesting shape within the black areas, this is looking too much like a pointed finger!
Carbon drawing......of beach plant. I am going to make some more cyanotypes of the beach plants next time the sun shines.
Yesterdays cyanotypes, a quick preview, they are still drying. The first two are images from a wonderful disintegrated plastic bag attacked by the ocean. The last two are from the monster seaweed. I am really excited with these initial prints. I have been reading Cyanotype by Peter Mrhar and it's wonderful, looking forward to experimenting with the real stuff. I have a completely dark bathroom so here's hoping I can get set up.
I was working on my photos and a young lass called Joanne put her head round the door and asked if it was open studios, so I said well it can be if you want. As she left after we discussed our mutual difficulty with numbers, F stops and all things cyanotype she said ooh you have inspired me. That is fab and made my day.
More Beach findings..they will soon all have labels
Wow, I was just looking online into why the last couple of cyanotypes were not exposing very well and I discovered this image by Rauschenberg dated 1950....and then discovered it was called Sue!!!
Trying to tame the beast
I was a bit disappointed that it didn't develop so contrasty, but not sure what I could do given the nature of the beast and the fact that I am working with the elements, in this case not only sun but a gentle breeze had just started
Trying a different angle, I read it should be perpendicular to the sun....well not quite! otherwise the object would slide off it's support.
Frank, an artist in residence here at Cromarty, organised a Drawing Day at the Brewery yesterday the day before he left.
He had an amazing glass topped contraption inked up with four colours ready for monoprints.
First print in Cromarty....using this object as inspiration
Sent all my images off to Columbia and in the process printed out some black and white images to play around and see what images worked well together....wanted to file them away but decided to make a little book and have some practice! here is the maquette.
First cyanotype....didn't take any timings and both the paper and plant kept moving in the wind but I really love the ghostly shadowy effect. It was indeed a print of the shadow of the plant.
OOOH, I am really loving this one.....I taped down the paper and clamped one bit of the plant so it moved slightly and timed it for 3 minutes in the most amazing glorious last day of September sunshine. It is so wonderful to be in the groove again. Phew.
Well Sunday was dolphin day, three of them swimming towards the ocean down the Cromarty Firth. I always get ecstatic when I see dolphins. So far there have been seals, whisky and log fires, dancing at a ceilidh, tremendous winds, a climb (well walk) up the South Sutor of Cromarty and a repaired/updated oil rig being towed back out to sea ...this was quite spectacular.
And then I discovered this
Later on in the evening I was informed that it had been left outside for a while and accidently killed someone argh....so I said I didn't want use it (I'm not sure of the whole story but I think it fell on said person)....but it has been used since, anyway I might attempt to get it going (watching my back at the same time!)
Having spent the first part of the week tidying up a few loose ends, collating images for a photographic group exhibition, 'Babel' later this year in Columbia and updating stuff, I am now working on a beach findings collection.