Lockdown Linocut 2/4

After the tense ending of the first episode, many will be asking: ‘What happens next?’ A bit like a lesser version of Who killed JR?

Well, in this episode, all is revealed. Understanding reduction cutting can be difficult, so hopefully it is demystified here. All of the cutting in this film is what I want to stay the first colour printed. If I didn’t cut anything, the second colour would completely cover the first. This means that I can never print the first colour again, as it is no longer on the block. So with this process, the entire edition has to be printed for each colour. There is no way back – hence it sometimes being referred to as suicide cutting.

You have been warned.


Comments 7

  1. Do linseed based inks provide more nutrition than safflower based inks? Seriously though I have a question John. Do you find the ink takes longer to dry as one ink overlaps the other and is then not absorbed by the paper like the first layer? I’m using inks without any driers added and with lots of extender it’s taking forever to dry where I have three layers of ink.

    1. Hi Andy, yes, the hard stuff more nutritious. Ink dries by absorption and evaporation. Once colour builds, the ink is sitting on previous ink, entirely so in the case of reduction prints. As it no longer has direct contact with the paper, it can’t absorb to the same extent, so it depends more on evaporation to dry, therefore taking longer. One of the characteristics of extender is that it makes this process even longer, especially as extender builds on extender. Paper has an effect on this too – a general rule is you get what you pay for. An extreme example would be newsprint, hardly any absorption, so can stay wet for months. High quality cotton papers show their quality as ink builds, it is likely to look less shiny too. Driers help, but just a small amount, some can work the opposite if you put in too much, ink can stay wet for an eternity…
      Hope that helps.

  2. Many thanks John, just great, I can’t wait for the next gripping instalment;)
    Neat trick with the two colours btw, and the scratching with a knife was cool. Does it work for multiple prints or do ths finer textures wear off?

    1. Post

      Hi Gill, glad you like it. The fine textures are dependent on level of ink, so a good roller helps, as they can put down a nice thin layer ( not too thin off course…). usually I would say a guide to how thin fine you can go would be as long as you can feel the mark well with your finger nail, then it should be okay. With multiple prints, you may fine that as ink residue builds up, the detail can start to fill. Simple remedy is to keep checking against the first print and then clean the block if needed – then start inking again. Hope that helps.

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