Tuesday, August 25, 2009

We have progress on the broadside

After printing my first pressure print layer on the letterpress at Diane's last Wednesday, it took me 3 tries before I had a plate that I was happy with for the 2nd layer. In the process, I completely destroyed the plate for the 1st layer, so that's officially cancelled.

My first attempt, using pva on cardstock, buckled the paper. My 2nd attempt, again pva on cardstock only this time I pressed it between release paper under bricks, I tried to lift up the release paper a bit too early and completely peeled off a layer of the paper. The 3rd time, I left it under bricks for overnight and that was ok.

I printed this layer at home, and had a heck of a time achieving any kind of a control over the situation. Everytime I changed the packing, things changed in ways totally different from what I was expecting. Everytime I inked up (with very little ink), the next print got way darker, and then 2 prints later, it seemed like I needed to ink up again.

I went through my 56 sheets of paper and it wasn't clear to me that I was going to get 40 good prints for the edition. But at this point, I really can't start over again.

I took a break from the broadside on Sunday, then on Monday I added the leaves and the white in the bark. So now there are 2 layers of pressure print on the letterpress (1st layer—gray & yellow background, 2nd layer—blue & orange over that), 2 layers on the gocco (the leaves & the bark).

Today, I looked at the bark and decided it needed to go white still, so there are now 2 layers of white over the bark, and here I'm printing the gray areas in the tree bark. The paper size measures 20"x13", so it's hanging over the edges of the gocco.

Now this is 2 layers of pressure print and 4 layers of gocco. I still have the text, patterns over the leaves, and maybe a rabbit to print.

The print is too large to dry on my drying racks, and I do like seeing them all lined up like this:

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