Author Archives: Simon

  1. Drypoint/Relief derived from drawings

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    These new prints are drypoints made with plastic sheet deeply scratched and with tile cement added. They are cut in to pieces jigsaw style and then inked, reassembled and printed in one go. Some parts are intaglio, some relief, some both. I think they do relate to the drawing in that objects are emerging…though not sure a cat is an object? They are also based on quick painted sketches that have been encouraged by the Spike Print Press Play course I am on – (see previous post)


    I need to make more to build confidence in what I am doing…all the time feeling the pull to return to my earlier way of working. All comments welcome….

  2. Drawings and other new ventures

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    I notice that in June 2020 I wrote about ‘new work on coming out of lockdown’….well now it is February 2022 and we are mostly still wearing masks but are hopefully through the worst of it. I have started a course “Press Play” at Spike Island Printmakers with tutor Emma Gregory. I recommend it to anyone interested in exploring a deeper understanding of their own practice. Here are some drawings I have made as part of the course – and these are forming the basis , or starting points for new drypoint/relief prints I am starting. More on these to follow.

  3. Jazz of Printmaking

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    I have been commissioned by Daisi – to make a short film about my practice for Primary school children to inspire them about artists. Whilst filming I realised how improvisational my work is – and I always say I don’t know what I am doing or where I am going with each print. A better description is that it’s the jazz of printmaking – using structures and elements to create a new work – always different. Pictured are some of the various images I draw from currently – paintings made in Morocco – riffs and rhythms that interplay in the new work.

  4. Covid 19 Lockdown

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    This is my first new piece coming out of lockdown. I have been surprised by what an unproductive time this has been for my own practice. This is also the first new blog post for 12 months which shows that my attention has been elsewhere. Concentrating mostly on participatory work with Double Elephant Print Workshop has taken me to schools and communities across Devon and Somerset, especially working a lot with Somerset Art Works in mental health settings. Lockdown brought all that to a close but I have been working with colleagues to maintain a DEPW on-line presence…#GOTTAPRINTTHROUGHTHIS.

    Now, with Devon Open Studios on the horizon and some work at Highgate Contemporary Art I am making again – and enthusiastically so.

  5. Moroccan influences

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    Six months in Essaouira, Morocco may have heightened my sense of colour – if such thing is possible. It’s hard to assess influences on work especially if working with abstracted images. I used a lot of bright Moroccan dried pigments to make paintings which are now slowly filtering back into the work I am making….images especially of buildings under construction, rooftops, alleyways, architecture.¬† Currently though, most of my time is being taken up running participatory workshops with Double Elephant Print Workshop – especially with Recovery Devon, alongside adults experiencing poor mental health. More daily influences but they are all welcome.

  6. New work

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    Here are three pieces of the new work. One starting point was an image by Cy Twombly which led to the red vegetation/plant like piece. I’ve become interested in the juxtaposition of something organic with a non organic geometric shape – the representation of a 3D object in 2D and how this confounds the image or makes it impossible – which follows on from a previous interest in making something unique, something that can’t exist in the real world.

    These pieces and others can be seen this year at The Exeter Art Show – Maynards School, Exeter April 20-22, Printfest, Ulverston, Cumbria May 3-6, Crediton Open Studios 6-8 July, Limekiln Gallery, Tavistock from 17 June and Devon Open Studios 8 -23 September


  7. intaglio/mono hybrid

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    I have now made 6 or 7 new prints on Somerset paper using a technique that uses 1mm pvc sheeting. I am cutting the plastic into shapes to describe the design. Pieces have drypoint or carborundum added and are then inked relief or intaglio or both. The jigsaw is then reassembled on the press and printed in one impression. The prints can be editioned and I would intend to print a maximum of 5 of each although have experimented with different colourways. I will be taking the new work to Printfest in Ulverston in May –


  8. DEPW exhibition at RAMM marks 21 years

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    Double Elephant is 21 years old. Established in 1996, we mark this with a group show at Exeter’s Royal Albert Memorial Museum. 35 members are showing¬† 75 prints. I gave a speech on the opening night and it feels great to have achieved this for Exeter – very proud of us for keeping going through thick and thin. I have 3 pieces in the Dartmoor themed show –

    Organised primarily by our Director Paula Youens, it is a great survey of printmaking. There are many other great prints to be seen –

  9. Food Glorious Food

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    Double Elephant Print Workshop has recently completed a third residency at Franklyn House Hospital in Exeter. This time we worked on images that focussed on food and healthy eating – the designs were later printed onto foamex and displayed in the dining area. The designs started with a basic drawing that illustrated a poem or song and then we used simple printed motifs – such as vegetables and fruit to fill in areas of the picture. Participants made the motifs using cut foam and card. We then coloured in the pictures with paints. With all our workshops at Franklyn we find that patients arrive in an uncertain and often nervous state – not sure what they are coming to. Very quickly though a group activity such as painting and print we find everyone is chatting and joining in, in a common endeavour. Sometimes our themes triggered memories of childhood songs and games leading to laughter and sometimes tears. Our inspiration were songs such as “Chick, chick chicken lay a little egg for me” and Tea for two”

  10. Adventures in colour

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    Here are three new prints – a kind of variant edition of three monoprints from lino all on Misumi Japanese paper. Colours were all chosen simply on a gut instinct and through the process of colour mixing. They are each two colours printed over black with a texture detail added to the central areas. For each, in my mind’s eye I had a picture of how they would be – a bright yellow and nut brown, white against strong blue – although in the mixing I added some green to the white and finally red against a kind of mauve which was a combination I dreamed about some days ago. Simple. I hope that in combination they make a trio that work well together and that each enhances the others.