I have long admired lino prints: their simplified, graphic style appeals to me. When I was in Macclesfield recently on a study visit to the Silk Museum, I and some of the other students visited a nearby art shop. I bought a lino cutting tool with five heads and a few pieces of lino to practise on.
Having just finished drawing plants for Part One of the Coursework, I chose some clover as my subject and made a pencil and pen drawing from which the lino print was taken.
I used a small wooden book press to take this print: I had already tried several hand stamped or hand burnished prints that did not transfer the ink well. When I was carving the block, I continued the lines from the flower head to the edge of the block, and also echo carved the shapes of the stems – somewhat of a mistake in retrospect. I think that making the background mostly white would have made the clover stems stand out more, or simply outlining them would have worked better. Also carving the whole of the clover heads in white without the extension cuts would have made them much more prominent. I did like the little sickle-shaped marks that I added to the background to represent the insect life surrounding the flowers. I will have another go at this type of printing.