Tag Archives: linoleum printmaker

Fused Glass Relief Print


Can You Hear Me

Fused Glass Relief Print

5″ x 5″ x 3/4″

I know it’s been awhile since my last post, but I’ve been working on a technique that combines relief printing and glass fusing.  This is the result.  It’s printed using glass powder on multiple pieces of clear sheet glass, which are then fused together to make an image /object the viewer can look into.  More to come, but I’m very excited.

Have a great day!


A Look Into My Studio+Reduction Print+Step 4

It’s that time again.  Time for the next layer in my reduction print.  I’m very happy with the shade of blue from last time.  I think it creates a good separation between the background and what will eventually be the foreground.

For this layer I will focus on what color I want in the top left corner where there is a line pattern in a square.

It should stand out, so I chose red.  I’m still inking much of the plate.  This is done because I would like the red to affect the following colors in order to maintain the palette relationship.

The next step is to begin darkening and separating the foreground.  But first, the ink has to dry for a few days.

I always work on more than one project at a time in order to not become stagnant between steps.  Right now I’m focusing a lot of attention to collages and preparing for the next print.  It also will be a reduction.  I’ll keep you posted.

Have a great day.

Copyright © 2012 by Drew Kail

A Look Into My Studio+Reduction Print+Step 3

The second color has dried.  So onto the next.

For the third color I want to begin my separation from background to foreground while still keeping the same basic red, orange, blue relationship.  The only part I carved away was the section of linoleum right below the orange shape.  This purple area will be the middle ground.  To push the middle ground back further and to strengthen the foreground I decided to print a saturated light blue.

The registration system is still working great!  No prints lost during this run.

It’s coming along.  I’m not sure how many more colors I’m going to print.  I mentioned in the original post that this block was carved as a black and white image.  It’s been extremely challenging to rethink the image, but definitely a worthwhile exercise.  My previous work was pretty much divided into black and white prints(woodblock/linocut/etching) and color prints(mixed process monotypes/collages/silkscreen).  This was an attempt to bridge the gap between my bodies of work and further their development.  So far so good.

Copyright © 2012 by Drew Kail

A Look Into My Studio+Reduction Print+Step 2

Here we go.  I’ve let the first color dry for a couple of days and carved away more of the linoleum block.  Now for the second color.

I only carved out a small section in the top left of the block.  One of my major goals in printmaking is to push the space back as far as I can to create depth.  Given that this is a small block the challenge is greater.  When I first carved it as a black and white image I used varying marks carved into the linoleum (line length, width, etcetera) to achieve this depth, but now I want to use color as well.

The color I chose for the second layer is kind of lavender. It’s darker than the initial color, but was derived from the leftover peach.  The inclusion of the original peach color was done in order to maintain the relationship between background and probable middle ground.  It is a way to keep it in the same family while becoming transitional to the later colors that will become the foreground.

The registration system worked pretty good during the second printing.  The block wiggles a little in the foam core which necessitated some manual tweaking before each print.  Some prints were a hair off.  No big worry. It’s a great start.  I can make some modifications and hopefully improve for the next reduction I do.  All in all, I feel I didn’t lose anymore prints during this pass.

Unfortunately, It was a pretty gloomy day when I printed this layer so the pictures aren’t that great.  I think this one does it justice, though.

When printing multiple color layers I always feel like each successive print is too much of that color until it all comes together with the black printing.

Now to let it dry and carve away some more linoleum.

As I’ve said before, I share a small studio space with my wife Alyssa.  Half is designated for fiber arts/sewing, and half is for whatever I’m doing at the time.

Here is a shot of my half.

The space underneath the table is reserved for packing materials, archival plastic sleeves, extra light bulbs for the light exposure unit and a plastic organizer that is far from organized.  The space is a work in progress, but does the trick.

On a side note, Thanks Traverse City SCRAP for posting about my blog on their Facebook page!  Here is their link: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Scrap-TC/179099202129410

I’ve added the link to the sidebar under Resources, Artists and Organizations.

On another side note, Alyssa just started a blog focusing on her work and I will be having a collage show in April at MAVEN right here in my awesome neighborhood of Montavilla.  I’ll keep you updated on the show, but here are links to Alyssa and MAVEN.





Both links will also be on the sidebar under Resources, Artists and Organizations.

Have a great day!

Copyright © 2012 by Drew Kail

A Look Into My Studio+Reduction Print+Step 1

Previously on my blog I gave a glimpse into my home studio to show that a large space, which I do want to someday have, is not necessary to make prints.  In fact, a real printmaking studio, though beneficial, can be circumvented with home ingenuity.

To see the previous blog post click here:


Here is the finished print

“Across Town”

Plate Size: 5 1/2″ x 3 1/4″

Paper Size:  7 9/16″ x 5 6/8″

 I graduated from Portland State University last June, and upon graduation lost access to the great printmaking facilities on campus. I was a printmaking grad without a studio.  I couldn’t afford a pay as you go printmaking facitlity and live in a small 750 square foot house with my wife and three cats.  Not an ideal situation for putting a printing press.  Since June I have mainly concentrated on showing my work, but have always been thinking about solutions to my space problem.

The blog post linked above was my first stab at one table printing.  Many of the materials I incorportaed came from my own home or from my local creative reuse center called SCRAP.  If you’ve read my blog before, you probably know how interested I am in using Rclaimed materials.  From my home came old towels, a big bowl as a water bath and my printing inks/brayers which I purchased from Daniel Smith Art Supply.  I printed an edition of 67 prints with a metal spoon.  At the end of it, honestly, my hands hurt, but I had succeeded in printmaking within my tiny studio.  Awesome.

A few days ago I was set to do it again with a new block.  Initially, the linocut I was planning on printing was to be another black and white image.  After it was carved I decided to up the ante and make the remaining block a reduction in order to derive a good registration system and improve the functionality of my workspace. This printing process is what I will be documenting beginning with this post.  I do not know how many colors the finished print will be, or if it will be good at all, but I wanted to show a printmaker at work with limited space, without a press and on a budget.

If you live in the Portland area, you are lucky to have an organization like SCRAP which takes in loads of materials beneficial to printing at home which would otherwise be destined for the landfill.  Check your local area for a like organization.  The link for SCRAP is listed under Resources, Artists and Organizations.  If you do not have one, no big deal, because this post is also about creating a home printmaking studio regardless of accessible space.  You may even be able to derive your own ways with found materials that work way better than what I’m doing, and if so, please share.  Throughout the post I will point out the origin of the materials I’ve used.

From the previous printing I kept my towels, the pieces of acrylic I found at SCRAP, the inks and brayers from Daniel Smith, and the painters tape.  New additions to the process were utilizing the bath tub as a water bath, please make sure it is clean before soaking you paper, a registration board made from foam core (from SCRAP) and thumb tacks (found in a drawer, origin unknown).  Oh… and I ditched the metal spoon for the handle side of a silkscreen squeegee.  I also use a sheet of wax paper between the handle and the printing paper to reduce friction when printing.  Silkscreen Squeegee found at SCRAP.  Wax Paper, very inexpensive at supermarket.

I’m using the leftover scraps of paper from past tear downs.  Those cast away strips of paper that too often seem useless.  I collect those.  Since many have slightly wonky sides and corners I’ll probably cut them down instead of tearing.  So, I measured on the foam core the rough paper size and where I want the image to be.  then I cut out the plate area where the lino will rest.  At the edge of the paper outline I’ve drawn an excess margin and affixed three thumb tacks. I will poke the tacks through each piece of paper upon printing.  During each successive colors printing the paper and tacks will be matched up by the original holes and  hopefully create an accurate registration system.  I’ve seen examples of this registration technique, but have never tried it myself.

****Important Note****  When soaking paper in your bathtub in a house with three cats, keep the door closed.  I started with 30 pieces of paper and have lost five due to a cat becoming curious, falling in the tub and thrashing to get out.  Lesson learned for both myself and Matisse.  Since I haven’t done a reduction print in four years and have never implemented this registration technique, I imagine I will lose a few more prints along the way.  My main goal is to learn more and improve for the next one.

In Process shots.  I decided to start with a dark peach color.

I’m using the top of my homemade light exposure unit as an inking station to open up more table space.

Same old cardboard box as a cat proof drying rack.

A few notes from the first run.  I used the spine of a hardback book to print a couple images as well.  Really the key is stiff, even contact with limited friction.  The wax paper works amazing.

Now to figure out what to carve next, and what color to choose for the second run.

Copyright © 2012 by Drew Kail