Linoprint with curves and stars…

But first…
Dulltown, UK: Today’s dictionary words are: interramal, swither, geognosy, comedo, zufolo, and reim-kennar. Please have these words looked up and placed in suitable sentences ready for Professor Mouldie first thing after breakfast tomorrow morning. As the professor and Mrs Mouldie are currently on a skiing holiday in Zermatt the lesson will be conducted via Skype; be warned, this should not be seen as an opportunity for high jinks and antics in the classroom.

dscn4682Part One:
Yes, another of my linoprints – I never know whether ‘linoprint’ should really be two separate words, ‘lino print’, or not – Google doesn’t like it as one word. But ‘linocut’ is all one word and that seems quite acceptable… But I digress…
As you may know I don’t bother with titles for my linoprints, but if I were pushed I’d call this one The Job in the City.
This is an odd one for me as it is quite figurative in nature – I usually go for the surreal and the abstract – perhaps I am an abstract surrealist? Do you think it has the feel of the 1930s about it? I do – it’s those concentric circular curves of course; and how about the little lone rectangle standing on the top of the steps? Is that a little human considering entering the great slab-building to ask for a job? It’s up to you I suppose.
And why didn’t I give him/her a more human shape?
Well, there are three answers to that:
(1) It would have been a pretty tricky cutting job as the ‘figure’ is so small, (2) I like the mystery of it not really being a ‘person’, and (3), as I mentioned recently, I have been reading a very strange book, The Box Man by Kobo Abe, about people who shun society and go about wearing cardboard boxes. I reckon the human on the steps might be one of those…

Part Two:
I do find cutting curves in lino quite difficult – you don’t have to be far out to have your circle looking awful, when they are right they look so perfect, when they are even slightly wrong they look… er, noticeable…  (only this morning I was discussing similar issues with my friend Scribbleartie)
So, I decided to make a kind of circle cutting device, a bit like a pair of compasses, but with a sharp blade instead of a pencil. It’s a stick of wood with holes drilled in it at 1 centimetre intervals for the centre point to go through, and a scalpel blade attached to the business end. The design was a bit tricky and need some tinkering to get it working properly, but here is a picture of it in use cutting the curves for the above print.



About Dave Whatt

Grumpy old surrealist artist, musician, postcard maker, bluesman, theatre set designer, and debonair man-about-town. My favourite tools are the plectrum and the pencil...
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14 Responses to Linoprint with curves and stars…

  1. Rebecca says:

    Oh I LOVE this deco-nod print, and your fancy little jig too. Looks like it worked perfectly! How satsifying. 🙂

  2. Jheron Bash says:

    You ARE a clever bunny!

  3. ktz2 says:

    I really REALLY like this one ! and I do like all that I’ve seen so far, with more waiting. Don’t worry about it being more respresentational than ‘abstract’-it’s perfectly perfect to me. I’ve been crazy for Deco since I was a kid.

  4. Oh I love this! Although, I have to say that I thought the little “human” was actually a door, and the building at the back looks like it has two eyes – which made me think of corporate environments and how there is always someone lurking and watching. And of course, i am very envious of your perfect circles – they turned out VERY well! I like your jig-amy-thing for the circles…..I need to make something like that only have a paintbrush at the end and a point at the other…..hmm, yes that would work. *rummages in boxes*

    • Dave Whatt says:

      Yes, those windows do look like eyes don’t they? I meant to mention that in my blurb, but forgot.
      Yes, he/she could be a door – I was being deliberately vague on what it was – the viewer can of course make of it what they will…
      I think the problem with ‘brush compasses’ might be that there would be plenty of paint on the brush at the start of the curve, but it would thin out towards the end… Not optimistic… I reckon a good clean pencilled-in circle and some careful filling in might be better.

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