Printmaking

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For the next part of Poets & Prophets, I am working with printmaking. I am almost completely unfamiliar with this particular area and the way it integrates within the creative process. So, from this point of view, it will be a compete revelation – and one, I hope, I will fine genuinely useful for my work.

Printmaking is the process of making artwork by printing, generally on paper. Printmaking normally covers only the process of creating prints with an element of originality, rather than just being a photographic reproduction of a painting.

Except in the case of monotyping, the process is capable of producing multiples of the same piece, each of which is called a ‘print’. Each piece produced is not a copy but is considered an original since it is not a reproduction of another work of art and is, technically (more correctly) known as an ‘impression’. Printmaking (other than monotyping) is chosen not only for its ability to produce multiple copies, but rather for the unique qualities that each of the printmaking processes lends itself to.

Monoprinting is a form of printmaking that uses a matrix such as a woodblock, litho stone, or copper plate, but produces impressions that are unique. Multiple unique impressions printed from a single matrix are sometimes known as a variable edition. There are many techniques used in monoprinting, including collagraph, collage, hand-painted additions, and a form of tracing by which thick ink is laid down on a table, paper is placed on the ink, and the back of the paper is drawn on, transferring the ink to the paper. Monoprints can also be made by altering the type, color, and viscosity of the ink used to create different prints. Traditional printmaking techniques, such as lithography, woodcut, and intaglio, can be used to make monoprints.

While I was researching mono printing, I came across the blog of one Kate McLeish, an illustrator and wannabe fashion writer from Manchester. Her work is very colorful and, while, at first glance it looks a little like child’s handprinting, there is actually a great deal of detail and varied style within the initially image.  http://katealexandramcleish.blogspot.co.uk/2009/05/mono-printing-and-collage.html

Screenprinting (occasionally known as “silkscreen”, or “serigraphy”) creates prints by using a fabric stencil technique; ink is simply pushed through the stencil against the surface of the paper, most often with the aid of a squeegee. Generally, the technique uses a natural or synthetic ‘mesh’ fabric stretched tightly across a rectangular ‘frame,’ much like a stretched canvas. The fabric can be silk, nylon monofilament, multifilament polyester, or even stainless steel. While commercial screenprinting often requires high-tech, mechanical apparatuses and calibrated materials, printmakers value it for the “Do It Yourself” approach, and the low technical requirements, high quality results. The essential tools required are a squeegee, a mesh fabric, a frame, and a stencil. Unlike many other printmaking processes, a printing press is not required, as screenprinting is essentially stencil printing.

Screenprinting may be adapted to printing on a variety of materials, from paper, cloth, and canvas to rubber, glass, and metal. Artists have used the technique to print on bottles, on slabs of granite, directly onto walls, and to reproduce images on textiles which would distort under pressure from printing presses.

An interesting side note, on The Apprentice, the task this week was in running a print business – and screenprinting played a large part in this task. One of the competitors already runs her own print business, and her expertise in the business really became apparent in comparison to the other team who had very little idea as to what to do, and how to do it. Rather disappointingly, they were not the winning team despite their having this considerable advantage.

Rather unexpectedly, I found that digital printing falls under the printmaking banner. Digital print refers to images printed using a digital printer instead of a traditional printing press. These images can be printed to a variety of substrates including paper, cloth, or plastic canvas. Accurate color reproduction and the type of ink used are key to distinguishing high quality from low quality digital prints. This is very apparent when using my rather basic Canon printer, and then running off a copy using the up-market HP that the University has in Regent Street Campus. Metallics (silvers, golds) are particularly difficult to reproduce accurately because they reflect light back to digital scanners. High quality digital prints typically are reproduced with very high-resolution data files with very high-precision printers. The substrate used has an effect on the final colors and cannot be ignored when selecting a color palette.

I think I’m going to try using screen printing for my project. Of the various processes that John explained to us, I found this to be the most interesting. I’m not completely sure if this will be the most appropriate method for my work, so I intend to experiment with various methods. I’m intending to use the design of the ax that I came up with earlier in the year – this still needs to be finalized. I’m a little unsure how well stenciling would work for this design, especially as type is involved.

I also decided that I’d concentrate on Morrissey in general – rather than starting a whole new project on one of the other poets & prophets. This will give me a more complete end project – I think.

I found this video online that explains the process really well – covers the points that I missed during the tutorial.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wogKeYH2wEE

Ref: http://www.moma.org/interactives/projects/2001/whatisaprint/flash.html

Ref: http://www.unprofessional.net/screen/

Ref: http://www.tate.org.uk/collections/glossary/definition.jsp?entryId=176

Hoefler Font

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I started the typographic work with a feeling of slight trepidation. I was not sure how I’d be able to make my work stand out from the rest of my class mates – due to the nature of simply tracking the letter forms. I guessed that the phraseology would be the stand out feature, so I thought of various different ways that could be interpreted as each respective law.

Because I am tracing preselected typefaces, there is less creativity available. I particularly liked Bifur typeface. It has a bold look that stands out, but has an interesting style, that could almost be classified as illustrative in style.

An example of the Bifur type face. I like the use of shading and the varying blocks of  color.

For some letters, I don’t think it works particularly well – such as for the letters “C” and “S”.

The type face is a good choice for work that needs to invoke the Art Deco era.

It was designed by Mouron Cassandre, who was a Ukrainian-French painter, commercial poster artist and typeface designer.

Bifur was released in 1929 by Deberny & Peignot of Paris as a single font and a two-part, two-color font. Apparently, it wasn’t a commercial success, but it did create quite a stir in the typographic world. It also inspired many other artists to create their own typefaces

 

I like the stye David Carson has, in particular, for one of his typefaces used an interesting method that almost looks like screen printing was involved.

I looked at this type of method with John and am probably going to be using a similar method for my Poets & Prophets assignment – of which the next one is about using print methods of production.

 

One of the typefaces that I have to use is Hoefler Text which comprises a family of typefaces from the dawn of the digital age.

 

Jonathan Hoefler founded the company in 1989, a time when typography for for the digital age was in its infancy. Very few of the type companies had embraced electronic publishing in a significant way, and those that had were only just starting to remaster their most famous fonts for use on PCs & Macs.

The trouble now was that the companies were trying to make their best typefaces when their production processes were at their weakest. This meant that lots of typefaces gained a bad name, and became some of the worlds worst fonts.

Fonts such as Ariel became notorious for the wrong reasons. Because they were used by everyone all the time, there was hardly any uniqueness and originality with the work. This becomes apparent today when, in some of my past lessons and assignments, Dan has admonished me for using the most usual text that I possibly could.

This is partly down to laziness – but since this has been pointed out to me, I am naturally not doing this any more. So many students, upon opening a new document, perhaps for an assignment or dissertation – or even, as is more appropriate to my course, a poster or advertising campaign, will not even change the font – so all students are using the same typeface – and this does not go down well with the tutor!

 

Ref: http://www.prepressure.com/fonts/interesting/bifur

Ref: http://www.ted.com/speakers/david_carson.html

Ref: http://www.typography.com/fonts/font_overview.php?productLineID=100010

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gin & Tonic – Creative Futures Week

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Tim McKraken was a student at Glyndwr Uni about 16 years ago – which was, back then, a college. He was on a foundation course for art and design, and after 2 years moved to Cardiff Univrsity to complete his Ba degree.

I am going to look at Tim’s commercial work after graduation – his experiences and then finally, his moving to the US.

Through a lot of hard work and a steely determination, Tim grafted a career for himself in the cut throat world of design advertising. He gained an impressive number of clients such as Kellogg’s, Game-Station and the Phones4U group. I am looking at these commercials.

Advertising is about careful phraseology suggesting a view or way of thinking that is conductive to the interests of the products being promoted. In the case of the Special K advert for Kellogg’s, Tim explained how the company had researched the calories and nutritional information that the bar provided. Thought the use of careful language, for example, “eating 1 bar for breakfast and lunch will make you gain less weight than eating your normal meals”. This obviously implies a benefit, but in actual fact, it is simply the bar being a far smaller snack than a meal…it is nothing more than that.

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In the case of Gamestation, a series of adverts was created to bring the helpfulness of its staff out, and promote games as gifts for the holidays. The idea behind the advert was the confusion that moms traditionally have in choosing the right games for their kids. The advert shows the mom going into the store and asking for “Call of Booty”. The assistant finds the correct game for her, and asks if it is for PS2, upon which the mom says that they’ve for an “eggs – box.

The advert uses a play on words and turns the whole thing into a very comedic visual. It can be intimidating for people going into new environments and asking for items of which
they have no idea – and this is very appropriate for gamers. Often, you’re either completely immersed in gaming, or don’t have any intrepid whatsoever. I fit into the latter category, so fully appreciate the moms position.
Game-station Advert

The advert that was made for the hardware supplier, Scruffs Scruffs was a break from the ordinary for Tim. Tim and his team decided to go outside the box for this shoot, and make something that was controversial yet fitted in well with the products. It was decided to make this advert into a porn movie – almost. Scruffs wanted to have a fun side to their adverts, by advertising the irreducibility of men when wearing their clothing.

There was a knock on effect of this concerning the woman who played a significant part in the movie – the woman was actually a teacher at the prestigious Stockport Grammar School. She was suspended after the ad was circulated between students.

BBC News

A Story that’s Never Been Told & The Chip Shop Story – Andy Cheetham

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Andy started his company 20 years ago. This post looks at the story behind the genius, and how he got to where is is today.

All the information was garnered through the lecture that I attended asart of the creative futures weeks, and backed up through online based research.

The Chip Shop awards

How it all began

Andy Cheetham was a 24 year old wannabe designelion Manchester.

In 1991, Andy had been made redundant 3 times in a row, and now, after all these years of working smd going noplace, had no job. The UK, much like it is now, was in a recession.

Andy worked for NWN for a time, he met the editor etc. I actually know the present owner of NWN media, who’s father, I presume, was the person that Andy met. I had a week of work experience at NWN in summer ’11 and really enjoyed it – working I’m graphics, layout and communication.

Macs hadn’t infiltrated creativity yet. The internet wasn’t around, he’d never written a letter in my life, not even a headline.

In 1991, Andy was 24 years old, he had been made redundant 3 times in a row, and now, after all these years of working smd going noplace, had no job. The UK, much like it is now, was in a recession.
He’d just committed to buying a new house, his car had just been stolen – which was going to find part of the house deposit,

Did he wallow in self pity? Or go sailing?

Andy needed to get a reputation – and fast.

He had boundless enthusiasm – but very little talent.

If no agency will employ him as a designer, he decided the only option was to start his own.

But he had no clients, no money and no contacts.

There were lots of talented people out of employment at the time anyway, ones that were far more qualified than himself.

When he gets involved – you have to be able to work with people. You need to be creative. Its imperative to keep an open mind – being blinkered will get you no place. It’s imperative that he keeps original.

The start up was funded by the equity in his house.

He decided that he had to either buy or make a reputation.

Barnacles fish and chip shop in Llandudno was owned by Andy’s parents. Andy realized that this had a lot of potential in furthering his career. He decided to use Barnacles as the scapegoat, and started working on an advertising campaign.

He used a lot of local press ads – full page – which cost about £200 for a spread. This gained a lot of publicity and, crucially, got him in print.

The caveat is that the ad has to run for a while…however it doesn’t say for how long it has to…. So a very useful loop hole..

The concept is the critical thing, no matter what price if the concept is good… You’re onto a winner.

Using busses for adverts is a cheap way to qualify for the campaign. Sticking a large advert on a bus is a brilliant advertising campaign.

Chip shop ads. The chip shop awards.

Joined the IPA – was asked to be on the council.

Not keen on being noted for being the one that bent the host competition rules…

Quite “the wonderful Mac”

The economy was bad in 1992 as well – you’ve just got to try hard. Be incredibly determined. That’s the trick.

Edit edit edit. If You spot an error, so will the creative director.

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Ffresh – Bedowin Rowland

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This lecture was all about the company, Ffresh, that is an organization for discovering new talent for the movie and theaters.

The Student Moving Image of Wales, to give Ffresh its alternative and much less memorable name,

Fresh find and discover new video talent.

Rowland made an intesting point when he spoke anout how little people involved I’m the creative media market sector rarely watch a lot of media related content. He stressed how important it is that we look at other media. Even if we do t enjoy it immensely, it opens our minds to work already out there.Content – how little people watch television

Going to film festivals is an excellent way of us expanding our knowledge as well.

Work for Fresh

Stand out from the crowd by doing things outside of the curriculum.

Marketing campaign is imperative with all works.

Portfolio Review – Jason Minsky

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Portfolio review an insight byJason Minsky

Jason recommends using about 20 of our best images in the portfolio.
Imperative to have a strong middle, start and end.

Its imperative to have as much enthusiasm at the end as you do at the start.

Jason shows a glass stained image of stained lights? This is a symbol for all the junk in space?

His portfolio layout and design sounds strategic. But is it?? Jason explains how having a straightforward design and plan is not always the best option. There needs to be the element of surprise within the portfolio to grab the viewers attention.

Jason asks how you know if your portfolio is professional. He says he gets asked this all the time, and has a very simple answer; You know it is a professional portfolio because it is being looked at by a professional.

Back in the day before Mac’s were widespread, Jason simply used a decent box for photos for the portfolio.

How do your get someone to get a flavor of you and your work in 4 minuets for 15 years of work?

You shows a real of work from now, work that reflects your most recent achievements.

The most important thing with portfolios is whom you are showing it too.

You have to be different. Stand out from the crowd.

Does the company you are applying to want to commission work? Researching the company so you have as much background information as possible is paramount.

Must always be prepared for the worst. Expect the unexpected.

Be confident in what you’re showing someone. You need to believe in your work to be able to sell it as successfully as possible.

Portfolios review

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1134

Speaker takes to the floor and starts talking about his past experience with jewelry making.

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He did a degree at Manchester met uni last year, his tutor was Tom Headwick, who has now gone on to make the torch for 2013 Olympics

He studied 3D design included black smithing etc etc

Took 6 years out to find stuff to do, design work etc etc

Then self employed for a time in Nw

Then decided to apply for an Ma in 1997

He studied ceramics to Ma level.

It was a very challenging environment – he worked with in advertising, marketing, – and subsequently stayed on and painted gallery’s – and also made his first performance there. As an employee there, he was allowed free access to the galleries theater.

He booked the Hockney gallery

Then while at the uni, he starts discussing sports.

Why are only certain sports included in the Olympics for example?

11:40now, putting together our portfolio

Th speaker discusses the world “professional”.

He looks at the wrapper of a professional wrap of wriggles cheering wing gum.

If he uses the world professional, will he get a massive check?

A professional toothbrush? That costs 39p?

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