Tuesday, 3 September 2019

PCANZ Print Exchange and the challenges of EDITIONING!

"Specimen: Manawa" by Toni Hartill

 Earlier this year I participated in the PCANZ Print Exchange.
This is the first year that this event has been run and it is hoped 
it might become a regular on the PCANZ calendar.

The brief:

"Members are invited to create an edition of 10 prints, 8 of which will be randomly exchanged 
with other participating members. One print will form part of a set that will be exhibited and 
available for sale to raise funds towards the 2020 PCANZ Summer School Scholarship. 

The remaining print will become a part of a collection showcasing the works of contemporary 
PCANZ members. This will be added to the PCANZ archive currently held at the Aratoi Museum 
of Art + History, Wairarapa and will be an invaluable collection to look back on in future years. 

This project will also be an opportunity for members to “discover” the work of other members 
and to begin, or add to, their own collection of contemporary NZ printmaking. We are hopeful 
for a majority of members, of all calibers, to be involved to make this a truly representative 
collection of PCANZ 2019."

Making an edition

If there is one thing I'm not keen on it's making an edition! 

 I know I'm not alone in this sentiment so perhaps this blog might help anyone who is breaking into a cold sweat at the thought of making an edition. 

My advice to start with

  1. Choose a technique(s) you enjoy and that doesn't make you tear your hair out because you will need to repeat it again and again... and again.
  2. If you are new to editioning, keep it super simple! Choose a one-step process, something that is easy to replicate such as lino-cut or woodcut rather than something more complicated such as drypoint which requires careful wiping, especially to produce a non-varied edition.
  3. Tear (or cut) all of your paper to size before you begin.
  4. I ALWAYS print at least 2–3 extra to the required amount of prints to allow for the inevitable mistakes. Less stress! The more tricky the chance of success, the more spares I would print.
  5. If using multiple colours, choose and test BEFORE you begin printing the edition.
  6. Break the project into smaller steps, planning how you will create the image. 
  7. Complete each step at a time. Don't try to rush it. Congratulate yourself on the completion of each step which takes you closer to the completed edition... but don't get over-excited before you've finished - stay steady and focused!

So, back to me and my editioning

I have the attention span of... a goldfish! I love researching and creating the image. I love making the plate(s) and experimenting and producing the final image. But, once I've cracked a good print, well, then I'm keen to move on to the next thing. 

I'll happily print a second image to check it wasn't a fluke! It also allows me to be able to sell one/ give one away and keep one for myself. At a push I will usually aim to produce an edition of 5. On a rare occasion, and usually only if the image is a "quickie" to reprint, and/or the likelihood of successful prints is high, then I might go crazy and print 15. My largest edition to date was 25 (I think) and I can't even remember what that was for as it was so long ago.

When I helped to organize this event I too was cringing at the thought of having to produce an edition. I was due to go to Spain just before the deadline so I thought I might just sneak out of the country and not submit anything but... no, darn, I was called out on that: needed to lead by example, we wanted as many people on board as possible to make it a success, etc. 

Plan B 

get organized early, 
plan the steps, 
break it down into manageable bites 
and get on with it.

Working Smarter to alleviate Stress!

I had been working on a couple of other projects at the time that had details that I thought could lend themselves to an interesting image for the exchange. I decided to work smarter not harder and, while I was creating components for these other projects, (Artist books: "Search & Rescue" and "Field Notes: Manawa") I would also create the components for this one. So much easier to strike while the inks are mixed and the press is set up AND while the techniques and ideas are fresh in my mind rather than trying to revisit sometime down the track.

Breaking it down, step by step

My image is made up of a number of components that could be created independent of each other. I decided to aim for an edition of 15 so I could send 10 for the exchange, keep one for myself and some to sell.

Step 1:
The mud: collograph with cutouts.

Step 2:
The mangrove seedling:
drypoint with hand-colouring, cutout.

Step 3:
Assembling the "main characters."

Step 4:
Tearing the paper to size.

Step 5:
Embossing the background.

Step 6:
Assembling final image.

Step 7:
Dreaming up a title and signing the works.

Step 8 & 9:
Completing the entry form, checking I am following instructions, 
then packaging up 10 and posting it off!

"Specimen: Manawa"by Toni Hartill
Drypoint, watercolour, collograph, blind embossing.

I included one of these prints in my "Field Notes" exhibition at Waiprint. 
Despite my earlier reservations it has grown on me and now I'm quite fond of it.

I hope those who received it in the exchange are too.

Contact me direct if you are interested 
in purchasing one of my remaining prints.

I'm totally delighted with my collection of 8 prints from PCANZ members:

Lee Brogan
Diane Harries
Toni Mosley
Jo Ogier
Kathy Reilly
Catherine Shine
Celia Walker
Lynne Wilburn

To view these and other prints in the PCANZ Print Exchange 
visit the website to scroll through a slideshow of images.

A single copy of each of these prints will be offered for sale to raise funds 
for the 2020 PCANZ Summer School Scholarship. 

Check the website or facebook page for updates.

Thanks for visiting!

Monday, 2 September 2019

Waiprint 2019


 This year Waiprint turned 30!!

WAIPRINT is an annual exhibition by 
Waikato Society of Arts printmakers at

ArtsPost Galleries, 120 Victoria Street Hamilton.

 I was thrilled to be invited to be this year's guest artist.

My exhibition of works was titled "Field Notes" and featured a selection
of recent botanically themed works including an artist's book 
which was the inspiration for the title.

TIP: To view the photos at a larger scale, click on any image 
and then scroll through them - so much easier to view them in detail!

Collograph, drypoint, monoprint, watercolour.
(Visit an earlier blog about the making of this work by clicking the link above.)

My other works exhibited included:

NZ Clematis ~ Puawhananga 
Specimen - Manawa

(Click on links to visit earlier blogs about these works.)

Twenty of the current WSA members exhibited 34 works in the main exhibition 
demonstrating their skills and talents in a broad range of media and styles 
to present a high quality and cohesive exhibition. 
There was possibly every print media technique present!

This was a beautifully presented and well organized event
that was a pleasure to be a part of.

Many thanks to all who helped to make it a success!

I look forward to meeting some of
the local printmakers this weekend when
I visit to teach my "Unfolding Ideas" workshop -
an introduction to artist books
and 3D folded structures.

Visit my earlier blogs about Waiprint here
or by clicking on Waiprint in the Exhibition menu
in the right-hand bar.

If you are interested in purchasing any of my work
please contact me directly.

Thanks for visiting!

Friday, 30 August 2019

"Coastal Cruising" series - now at Art Bureau Gallery

"Landscapes & Signifiers" 
is an exhibition currently on at Art Bureau Gallery, 
228A Dominion Rd, Mt Eden. 
On til 19th September, 2019. 
Mon-Fri 10am - 4pm.

I was very honoured and delighted to be invited to contribute works to this exhibition 
by curator and artist Rebecca Tune.

Artists in the exhibition include: 

Richard Adams, Rodney Fumpston, Sean McCarthy, Jo Dalgety, John Horner, 
Geoff Tune, Mark Wooller, Justin Summerton and Toni Hartill.

"Coastal Cruising I" by Toni Hartill

Detail: "Coastal Cruising I" by Toni Hartill

My  "Coastal Crusing" series of works are part of a larger series inspired by my family’s connection to the Northland Coastline of New Zealand. My landscape work draws on my physical experience of being within a landscape to attempt to express my emotional, and physical relationship with the environment. 
These works were created in contemplation of time spent cruising the coast with my family, retracing the trails of my grandfather AH Pickmere who surveyed the Northland coastline and who’s lifelong work is published as the Pickmere Atlas.

Our copies of the atlas are well-thumbed and inscribed with records of our visits to the many islands, inlets, nooks and crannies - where the snorkeling was great, where we went ashore to hike over the hills for the best views, the good anchorages, the sandiest beaches and the best sea caves to explore. All the while, as our fingers trace the lines on the charts, we are constantly awed that "Grandpa" actually surveyed all of this himself, no fancy technology, no laser sights nor gps. His launch, a clinker dinghy, his trusty notebooks and a well worn pencil, his theodolite...and a commitment to chart his beloved coastline.

Arthur Hereward Pickmere, Opito Bay.

AHP notebooks

Each of the "Coastal Cruising" works are unique, one-off pieces made using a variety of printmaking processes. Each print would have passed through the press at least a dozen times to create the many layers of patterns, colours and textures.


 Details and the making of the works

Plaster collograph plate by Toni Hartill

"Coastal Cruising I" (detail) by Toni Hartill
Example of embossing detail - Coastal Cruising series
Example of embossing detail - Coastal Cruising series

Stencils and masks by Toni Hartill
Stencils and masks by Toni Hartill

Enquires and feedback welcome.

Visit Art Bureau to view until 19th Sept, 2019.

All works for sale.

Thanks for visiting!

Friday, 19 July 2019

Imagined Journeys through Lost Landscapes - I, II, III

Lost Landscape Meander Books by Toni Hartill

Artist's Statement:

Imagined Journeys through Lost Landscapes I, II, III 

Imaginary journeys through the lost landscapes that once were the swamps of the Hauraki Plains. It is estimated that more than 98% of pre-European Kahikatea has been lost nationwide and now only occurs as forest fragments. Since researching our nation’s history regarding the demise of our pre-European landscapes I feel bereft for all we have lost and I fear for what we continue to lose.

Lost Landscape Meander Books by Toni Hartill

The making of the books

These books came about through play. 
And through a desire to paint rather than print. 

You may know that I was primarily a painter that has got way-laid by the lure of printmaking and I often, and always, long to paint again. These wee books were joyous to create: playing with paint, zoning out in the moment with wet-in-wet, colour and composition...

The structure of the books is known by various names including Snake Book, Meander Book, Accordion Book... My preference in this case is the Meander book as it suits the idea of a journey quite aptly.

They began with very loose watercolour paintings on both sides of heavy watercolour paper. I very much had ideas of imagery in my head (my imagined landscapes) and an idea of how the large sheet would actually read as many smaller pages within the books.

The boxes are made using a simple origami pattern folded into a box with a matching fitted lid. 

The paper for the boxes is antiqued and printed with text from an article, written by a descendant of the Bagnall brothers who ran a mill on the banks of the Waihou River at Turua, Hauraki Plains. There they milled Kahikatea trees to be made into butter boxes. The descendant expresses regret for their family’s part in the destruction of the forest as they describe the “men with axe and saw, slashing their way into the doomed bush… It was the beginning of the end for many of the feathered world that inhabited its depths… The massive trunks came faster and faster… but a grand and noble forest lay dying.”
Le Baigneau, “Where the Village Slew the Forest”, NZ Herald, 24 April 1937.

Refer also to:

EnvirohistoryNZ: The slaying of our kahikatea forests: how Jurassic giants became butter boxes

Watercolour paintings

 The finished painted surfaces

 Gridding up and cutting

 The joy of 3D forms

 Turning the pages to discover the mini landscapes within

Imagined Journeys through Lost Landscapes I, II, III 

Watercolour accordion books within origami boxes


by Toni Hartill

Small x2: 60 x 60 x 30mm I, II

Large x1: 80 x 80 x 40mm III

These books are exhibited, as part of a larger body of work 
 inspired by the loss of the Kahikatea forests of NZ, 
in the Forest has the Blues - Murmurings exhibition 
 at the Steel Gallery, Franklin Arts Centre, Pukekohe.

Opens Saturday 20th July, 10.30am.
Artist talk: 11.15am.

Exhibition: 20 July - 24 August, 2019.

View other books in my Artist Books tab.

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Thanks for visiting!