Sunday, July 14, 2013

Island Press and St Louis- editioning my summer away!

Hello everyone!! Okay, I've disappeared for real this time : ) After the whirlwind Ohio print gathering at Tiger Lily Press and moving for a bit, I've hardly kept up with the blogging world. So now, with only 3 weeks left, I have an update on my adventures- as editioning intern at Island Press, Wash U, St Louis.

Our first weeks are spent gluing, gluing, gluing! Here is recent grad Elisabeth, working on Trenton Doyle Hancock's work.

I am also on the gluing team, finding all the pieces and flattening prints

Our crew also likes to have fun with prints : ) Interns Rachel Sperry and John McCaughey with Master Printer Tom Reed (with the Styrofoam head)

Here John rolls up a flat for Trenton's print

Here is the stencil we lay on top before printing the flat over the photogravure. Sometimes we pout about it : )

Curating the prints

I love the random notes and shop signage

Very important! This sign should be everywhere

I am also lucky to get a loaner bike left from a previous intern. It's a bit of a strange 1-speed, altered ride, but hey, it gets me to work!

In the meantime, I get to do some of my own work. I started rocking a plate in the kitchen

scraping the mezzotint


Island press is also kind enough to let me use some steel plates. I brought an angle grinder so I can bevel the edges speedily…and in a manly way

then I sand them

now using the shop sander to polish the surface, starting with 400 grit

now moving to 600, see how much shinier?

still going

at 1200 grit, woohoo, I can see myself!

another week at work, we print Ann Hamilton's embossed and debossed transfer paper prints

 the photopolymer plate makes a nice, subtle impression and transfers the blue onto tracing paper

I have to flip it over so that the plate is on top, otherwise it is too much of an embossment. Gymnastics are required!

and sometimes I get sassed

but then we have cookie parties and everything is alright!

now we get ready for a wonderful summer program- kids at the Alberti school

we roll up and prints large flats for a background- street, grass and sky

Rachel, our Vanna White, poses with the beautifully-inked plate 

now it's time for the kids to come in!

they draw on many houses cut out of Sintra, with ballpoint pens

Rachel working with one of our favorite cuties, Evan

John helps the kids draw

now setting the plates on the press in registration

 wait for it...

WOWEE, look at that!

holding up the print

here comes another one- they love it!

I let the kids play with some ink

rolling up more houses

here are the finished projects- such great little street scenes designed by all the kids

and now a print of all the houses together. How cool- what a successful couple days!

back to my work, I get to etch a steel plate in nitric acid- 1st time. I've only done steel once before in copper sulfate

brushing the bubbles from the plate

aquatint test strip

blocking out everything but the horsey legs

here's the 1st proof! A LOT more work needs to be done but hey, at least it's started

the mezzotint is about there

back at Island, we cut enormous sheets of paper, 60"x90"- that's teamwork!

and this is how you soak that sheet of paper- just roll it on through the water tray on an angle, let it drain, then wrap in plastic

our next big project is James Siena's arrow prints- here's the crew laying down the paper

and this is how you pick up that paper- lay a pole (with cardboard tube) across the back, peel up one end and drape it over, in half

then pick the whole thing up…very slowly. VoilĂ - it's all a dance!

I'm on arrow inking inspection duty

Tom and Rachel pull another print- cool mirror image!

placing the arrows- very tedious

John and Rachel laying the last few down

and pulling yet another

Nice work, crew- well done!

Eet's soo big!

We had a day off later that week for July 4th, so I took the opportunity to explore Forest Park- here is the World's Fair Pavilion

and a lovely little gazebo and lake

and on the weekend, what more fun than Gus' Pretzels in an abandoned ball field?

there's also some great architecture downtown- this is the Soldiers' Memorial museum with Art Deco Pegusi

and the arch! I've gone right up to it, just not IN it

back at work, now we have another Siena print, this time with THREE rows of arrows. ahh!!

some days just be like this : )

 but other days things work out- hooray, we've got it!!

So stay tuned, as we've got three more weeks to go. I will try to wrap up my work, and we will be printing much more James Siena and Ann Hamilton. After I'm done at Island Press, I'll have a trip back east to visit lots of family, friends and printshops. Then back to Cincy to teach some non-toxic etching. Woohoo- as always, thanks for reading!!

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