T1: MMT: Pt 4: Pj1: ex1 ii

Day 3

I came home with an urge to use Payne’s grey. Goodness knows why?! I satisfied myself with a mix of black, blue and white. I worked in the garden. The paint was melting in the heat and had become very watery. That and I may have washed my brayer and plate with a little washing detergent last night that remained and the ink mottled and puddles on the surface. Instead of being disappointed I wanted to exploit this. If anyone knows what in particular I did ‘wrong’ I’d really like to know so I can do it ‘wrong’ this way again!


Rather than found objects from the house, today I decided to experiment with leaves and grasses and weeds and bits from the garden. I managed a fair run until my youngest came out intrigued and somewhat took over her own run of prints. It was fun to share. But, I might have to make a gelli plate so we can share and work simultaneously!

Today’s results are extensive. What I have learnt from today is that the gelli plate can create a clear print of the negative image and I am most interested when it becomes pleasing shapes and forms rather than a distinct ‘leaf’ or ‘flower’. The same can be said for the positive images – those that became more than an impression of the chosen organic form offer the most potential to develop. Whilst the clear, precise and exact ‘copies’ are technically very clear and clever, they simply feel imitative and a version of photocopying. I want to have some part in the image formation beyond simply putting the ink on the plate and assembling the ‘stencil’ composition.

I used printer paper and cardboard packaging – white side and brown side and smooth layer stripped back to reveal corrugations.

Today’s most promising candidates are:

Love-in-a-mist (Nigella) that looks like a frost flower or a sample of hoar frost.



And the image that makes me think of dragonflies:


Before I was usurped from my work station I had a go at drawing straight on to the plate:


As can be seen the inking ‘error’ creates a lot of interest in the piece. I am now left wondering what would happen if I were to use paint and salt, ink and salt, ink and oil – to try and push this effect more consciously and with some control in order to be able to recreate it at will.

4 thoughts on “T1: MMT: Pt 4: Pj1: ex1 ii

  1. Lovely prints. To repeat the crackling effect I think the key is to use a rather fluid or diluted almost aquarelle paint as it will be repelled from the surface of Gelli. But to be honest my experience is not really that empirical. But the fact here is, that you have GREAT results. I just love it how you throw yourself into a new medium, uninhibited and free. I can learn so much from that approach. Thanks for sharing – and so nice that your daughter is having fun with you. I am guessing that your girls on a daily basis get a great lesson for life about the willingness to experiment and take in life and art! way to go!


    1. Thank you Inger. That’s really helpful advice on the paint dilution. I will experiment further. As for the girls…it would be nice to hope so. Time will tell.


  2. These are really inspiring, Lottie. I agree with your comments about creating your own image from the source rather than seeking an exact likeness; that’s what I loved about collagraph too. This process seems to really suit your fluid lines and spontaneous ways of working. Lovely.


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