Diane Young

Artist ~ Printmaker ~ Painter ~Every Picture tells a story ~ Artwork ©Diane Young


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#Collagraph #Printmaking Process tips

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I have made a rubbing of my mountboard plate by lying layout paper (which is very thin) over the top of the plate and using a graphite pencil to get an impression.

I scan or photograph the rubbed image onto my PC and open it in Photoshop. Since the lights and darks of rubbing itself are the opposite of what my final print will look like I invert the black and the white in Photoshop to see what it looks like.

This gives me a very good idea of where the lights and darks will be when I do my final Collagraph print.

Rubbing using graphite pencil over the plate
Blacks and Whites inverted in photoshop

See now how the wing is now the highlight and the underside, eye area and lower beak is dark.

On the plate itself these highlights also have wood glue (or you can use PVA) which help to create brighter highlights on the finished print.

I am happy with this; now for the inking and printing!


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Sundarbans #Seahorses

I am trying to hold back on this work in progress and not ruin it by any rash decision making.

The seahorses and the arc are collagraph print, and what appears as coral is watercolour based on the pattern made by the Sundarbans where hundreds of rivers meet the Bay of Bengal.

Photo of textures tested in the form of cats by artist printmaker diane Young stroud


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Keeping Track of Failures!

Yesterday I was watching a Brian Cox programme about the discovery of treatments for diseases; catching up on things recorded last summer!  Brian Cox was describing how these days our investment in research is focused only on the cure or solution to the problem, ie discarding any negative results as irrelevant. The unfortunate problem with this is that scientists and researchers are not being given free rein to discover things by accident when inadvertent discoveries can also lead to the creation of useful results.

The permanent dye for the colour mauve was accidentally discovered by a scientist (William Henry Perkin) who was trying to create a synthetic quinine which is a cure for malaria.  He made his future wealth out of producing this dye particularly after Queen Victoria wore a silk gown dyed with his creation mauveine.  He failed in his original task, yet this discovery was deemed to be a success!

Essentially, both successes and also the detailed records of failures can be of great use to other research in the future.

The same could be applied to artistic endeavours couldn’t they?

I do divide my failures into those which are possibly useful to refer to in the future and  rubbish definitely to be binned!   It just would not be possible for me to store everything especially since switching from painting to printmaking.  Photos of work in progress and experimentation can make it easier to store information, or even just notes.

I hung onto this trio of tom cats below which was created simply to test a printmaking texture.  It was useful yesterday in convincing me to use a particular texture for some mountains on a new piece I am working on at the moment.

Photo of textures tested in the form of cats by artist printmaker diane Young stroud
Photo of textured mountains by artist printmaker diane Young stroud


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Blueprints #prussianblue #collagraph #printmaking #

It is coincidental that a printmaker’s single colour choice is often prussian blue and that this happens to be one of my favourite painting colours.   Keeping the inks simple is best for me at the moment whilst trying to get the shade via the texture right, as well as the consistency of the ink, the paper and the press!  Prussian blue’s history is extremely varied; if you are mad about colour history there is plenty of very interesting facts about Prussian Blue here.


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What’s not to like about lichen?

In the Cotswolds lichen seems to be a bit difficult to find, plenty of moss but no obvious lichen, until you find it on your door step in a little packet sent from a kind friend in Scotland where it is in abundance.

I have to get a plan together quickly before it deteriorates!

Photo of moss and lichen sent from Scotland to the Cotswolds for Diane Young ARtist in Stroud