Friday, 30 May 2014


Thursday 28th May will go down in our household as the day Sue got her spot-welder!
This useful piece of kit came from Westermans in Leicestershire and will allow me to neatly join my steel moths together.
The electrician came in this morning to put a stonking plug in the shed and off I went. Now like any new bit of kit it takes a bit of experimenting to get it right.
As you can see it took me a couple of goes before I got the power right.
I have stopped melting the metal, it was all very exciting.This neat little join is strong,
tidy and
enamels smoothly. One layer of grip coat,
a layer or ivory,
finishing off with a transfer.
I am now ready to embark on a new body of moth lights and new swarms.

Friday, 16 May 2014


Every now and then I need to learn a new if my head was not full enough! The best way to do this is to ask a chum round to play. My lovely friend Lesley (Printed Material) travelled all the way from Wales to spend time in my shed to work out how to do Kitchen Litho.
It all seemed fairly simple, foil, cola, oil, sponges and greasy drawing materials
Lesley and I followed several instructions. We even sat down and watched a Utube video together, it all looked very simple.
We are practical women, use to process led ways of working.
And we did eventually manage one print, which I could then not repeat!! Ooooh!!
Better foil, fresh cola, do folk who tell us how to do this miss out that crucial bit of info that makes it work? Have you got the secret? Or is it a hit and miss process? I will have another go when I have time, but so I could end the day on a practical high...sharing the day with Lesley was my emotional boost,
I had a go at this. Fresh photo copy, acetone and an iron. This resist method I got from one of my favourite books, Semiprecious Salvage: Creating Found Art Jewellery, Stephanie Lee. It will allow me to make photographic looking images etched into metal. Here I have used ferric chloride to etch the copper. It will be an alternative to a method of resist I learnt on the Guild of Enamellers Conference workshop a few weeks ago where I had a go at electro etch.
On that workshop we used PNP ironed onto steel, similar method, different stuff.
Backed with tape and an electrode taped into the back of the steel.
Then attached to a car battery recharger and sat in salty water.
The results are spectacular. So I am going to try the iron and acetone photocopy method to resist the etch as it is cheaper than PNP and not quite so fiddly. Watch this space!
There are lots of books and Utube videos about all these methods, the resist methods will be useful to my work, but I have to admit, for me life is too short for litho. With all these lovely processes out there my only advice to you is before embarking on hours of experimentation, think how you would incorporate this method into your work. But don't stop experimenting.

Monday, 12 May 2014


Setting myself the challenge of making a collagraph a month and then telling everyone that is what I will do is very motivating. The more you make the more you want to make. So here is this months piece ready for finishing touches when it is dry. 

Thursday, 8 May 2014


I am still working on my challenge of a print a month and for sometime I have had it in my mind to work on another corvid cousin, the magpie.
I spent a happy morning wandering around Cheltenham hunting these urban birds.
Another couple of days drawing and I am now ready to start making a collagraph plate.
Using grey board and Skim and Repair.
Carborundum to create the dense black and wood glue to create the white.
Exterior wood glue is by far the best adhesive to secure the carborundum to the surface of the grey board.
I let it sit on the glue for a few minutes to get maximum stick then shake it off like glitter.
This white glue will dry clear and the ink will wipe off it but ink will remain in the drawn lines.
The plate is beginning to come together and the story is developing. The plate needs to dry out thoroughly and then with a coat of shellac it will be ready to print next week.
Magpie and his little friend Robin, oh now there's an idea for another piece, but I don't do fur??