South East Regional Queensland activities for the Print Council of Australia’s Year of Print kicked off with a bang only a few days into the new year with a three day workshop in Toowoomba with Dianne Longley from Agave Print Studio in Victoria.
Participants were treated to a comprehensive overview of printmaking with photopolymer plates, completing a relief and intaglio print and learning the processes for photographic reproductions. Dianne introduced a new technique she has been developing using scraperboard to create a unique feel to imagery that is hard to reproduce in other mediums. The scraperboard images were scanned and used for both relief and intaglio. Dianne showed participants an inking technique that allows very fine detail to be retained in the relief print.
A textured or decorative background was then made as a second plate, using pens or pencils on architectural drafting paper. The transparencies were applied directly to the plates in the exposure process. More layers can be added using photographic techniques, colour, or more textural detail.
The Toowoomba Saturday Printmakers group had constructed an exposure unit from the plans in Dianne’s book, ‘Printmaking with Photopolymer Plates’. The unit worked well for the workshop. The book is an essential guide for anyone interested in photopolymer printmaking and available on the Agave Print Studio website.
The Toowomba group showed visitors what great cooks there are in regional Queensland, serving up a brilliant shared lunch every day of the workshop.
Although most of the participants were experienced printmakers one participant was a complete newcomer to the processes. It was a delight for everyone to see her change from confusion to a committed and enthusiastic printmaker over the three days of the workshop. By day three she had even sewn pockets onto her t-shirt to hold rags/tools etc.