Learning to linocut

Did you make any New Year's resolutions? I did - just one - to acquire new skills. So, armed with £30 of Cass Art gift vouchers (lucky me) I set off into Liverpool and bought myself the Essdee linocut set and some system 3 acrylic block printing medium.


I seriously expected that cutting the lino would be the hard part, but no - with lovely sharp tools and special soft cut lino, that part was easy. Keeping a steady hand and a shallow angle, and going slowly is the key here.

The hard part was getting a decent print. I learned that the Essdee brayer is a good starter tool, but the tray they supply for preparing and rolling the ink is not flat enough.

Here are my first attempts printed into my journal, a cheap thin paper. Patchy to say the least!

With more time rolling the ink I began to see an improvement

On day three I switched to a glass table mat for rolling the ink rather than the plastic tray, and made much better progress. I also began to experiment with colours, using the block printing medium and my acrylics.

I discovered that the smallest amount of ink on the glass becomes ready to print quite quickly. Waiting for that sticky velcro sound with a lot of ink takes a lot of rolling!

Today I experimented with vintage dictionary paper, which is thinner than the Bristol board and heavy weight cartridge paper that I had been using. I've found that with the heavier papers there is more texture in the print, and with the lighter papers the print is smoother. That was a surprise.

Prints are available for a limited time on  Stephanie Guy Fine Art on eBay
and StephanieGuyFineArt on Etsy

I do hope these links work for you. Alarmingly I couldn't find myself on Etsy when I searched for my name! That's something to tackle another day.

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