|Detail: "Rockpool ~ Softly Sleeping", Drypoint|
|Woodblock print in progress|
|My "Little Giant" featuring metal rollers, runners and my high tech laminated hardboard bed.|
The bed: As I mentioned in my earlier post on the press I made the executive decision to forgo the use of a laminated plastic bed, or a metal bed, due the cost. Instead I decided to make do with two sheets of hardboard which we laminated together. It's still works just fine and show no signs of wear so... if it ain't broke.... On a side note, while I was on holiday down south I went to an amazing print gallery in Old Cromwell Town called OCTA. The owner has a press set up in the back of the gallery and I noticed his bed is simply a sheet of thick plywood. If it's good enough for him....
|Felt underlay from an old upholstered armchair|
|Main blanket: a foam camping mat!|
Inking up: I use a glass plate - an old safety glass window pane. Personally I like to roll up on glass and I simply put a sheet of white paper underneath so I can see the colours clearly for mixing.
To sum up: The mangle cost $125 from a junk shop, the metal tube for the rollers and the runners cost $30. It was going to cost $500 for an engineer to put the metal tube onto the wooden rollers and lathe them but coincidentally our neighbour is a toolmaker and he did them for us out of kindness and generosity! (Bless his little cotton socks!) Metal fittings - nuts and bolts and screw thread rods, and paint cost about $50. The hardboard bed - scraps from an old bed base. Blankets: repurposed from found items. Hours of printmaking: PRICELESS.
It's wonderful having a press here at home so I can work as the mood takes me. I'm currently working on a series of woodblocks in readiness for group shows coming up in the next few months. In between other commitments I can "pop" down to the workshop and "whip" off another colour run and not worry about having to pack everything away in between sessions. I set up a paper cutting and registering table on the bench saw, I have my inking up station on my studio bench and I have a wash up area just out in the carport with a large stainless tub and wooden bench. And I ban hubby from any woodwork projects til my print run is done - dust!