In My Printing Apron

debbie little wilson

Tag Archives: printmaking

The Salina Project…. First Printing…

Well, I got down here to the studio early because I am excited to start this Project. I already have on my apron… that is a good start… my apron is on before noon… LOL

I had to trim up my plate first …



Now that the plate is trimmed it is ready to begin printing…

I have the paper soaking in a vat of water to soften the fibers so that they will bend into the lines and dips in the plate to pick up the ink…

I need to prepare the ink. For this etching, I want to use a sepia color but I would like it darker.. I will be using Graphic Chemical ink.. Sepia and Intense Black and some Easy Wipe…. Since I am going to be printing 250 etchings, I will need to be mindful of my mixing so that they will all turn out the same color….


The Salina Project

Well, I had to set my “starts” aside so that I could get knee deep into my Salina Project.

I was commissioned by the Salina Arts and Humanities Commission  in Salina, Kansas to produce an edition of 250 etchings for them to give to their donors. I have been working with Karla Prickett who is the community art and design coordinator to come up with an image of an interesting woman (since my subjects are usually women). We decided on a woman named Mary Campbell. She is a daughter of one of the founding fathers of Salina. She was quite fascinating and there were some killer photographs of Mary doing everything from swimming, skating, rifle shooting and music.

We decided on a photo of her conducting a small band of children on the porch of her house. Mainly because of it’s relevance to the arts…I love this photo..And after reading about her and looking at all the photos, I love Mary ( so does Karla)…. Anyway, so I played around with it and superimposed a journal entry probably made by her mother of Mary’s accomplishments.  This image that I am going to make into a Solar plate etching……

Mary Campbell..... leader of the band

I have to make a transparency first so that I can make the solar plate…..

Guess that means that I have to go put on my Apron……

Okay so I have made a plate ….. I put the transparency of the image on the solar plate, covered it with my light box and exposed it to the light. Then I submerged the plate in warm water to wash out the photo emulsion that didn’t harden by the light.

Here is a photo of the plate… it is a little hard to see right now but it will be easier to see once I ink the plate… I will do that tomorrow…

exposed solar plate

Getting down to Business

To me, putting on my apron means getting down to business….

It means, “prepare yourself”  for getting messy… well, I am pretty messy most of the time but in an apron, I can get dangerously messy….

I have plans on making 2012 a busy and messy year so I will be in my apron quite a lot.

I am a Printmaker…..

Mainly, I work with Solar Plate etchings and Monotypes. I make my own etching plates and print them either by themselves or in combination with monoprints or monotypes.

The Mice Will Play

I  also collect vintage papers, photographs and ephemera (old valentines, trade cards, postcards, game cards, sheet music, books and etc.).

Today, I have been composing some of my monoprint collages. They are going to be 8 x 8 inches.

I choose a pile  of the ephemera that I want to use and combine them with my Solar Plates  to prepare for printing….. They become what I call my “Set Ups” or “Starts”…

Here are some photos of my stuff and how I begin my process…

file box of small collage bits

solar plates

putting some things together

Once I have a good stack of these “Starts”, I will begin to print…. But that won’t happen for a few more days…… Gotta get back to work…