Different tones and ink values are determined by the texture of the plate and the degree of wiping.
The smoother an area the paler it will print. For example well wiped Sellotape or parcel tape will print almost white. Masking tape will print a mid tone. Here are some suggested means of applying texture:
– cut and peel the mattboard base. With a craft blade cut a shape deep enough to penetrate the surface layer of the mattboard. Peel away the top layer and it will expose the layer below with a rougher texture which will print darker.
– paint areas with PVA glue or with acrylic texturising medium. Use a brush with stiff bristles so that the brushmarks show and/or dab with different objects to make a textured surface.
– mix polyfilla with PVA glue, apply and allow to set. When hard you can scrape and scratch textures into it. Or before it gets too hard you can press objects/materials into it to make an impression.
- I used Liquitex acrylic medium which prints nicely you can see the brush marks
- I also used lines scratched into the card
- Glue – pva out of a squeeze tube
- How to get a dark tone? I think below the notes on using carborundum should make dark
– cut out shapes and glue textured materials to the baseboard. For example:
- textured vinyl wallpapers, sandpaper, any textured paper
- lace, canvas, silk, any textured cloth
- leaves, feathers, fibres
- grain, rice, coffee grains, sand
- carborundum grit: this is my favourite material for collagraphs. With it you can obtain very rich velvety effects. It comes in 3 grades – fine, medium and coarse, Paint an area with PVA glue and sprinkle carborumdum over it. When dry shake off the excess.
Or mix carborundum into PVA and apply the mixture with a paintbrush.
Step-by-Step Guide from Susan Yeates Course on making collagraphs.
1. Cut a piece of thick cardboard for the basis of your collage (i.e. the size that you want your print to be.) Your collages can be as large or as small as you want.
2. Collect together and prepare a selection of items for using on your collage – be creative and look for items with contrasting textures. We have listed below just a few suggestions for items and materials that you could try:
Any other interestingly textured fabric
Dried flowers and leaves
Packs of Children’s craft shapes and supplies etc
The list is endless…
Some materials will be much easier to stick using PVA glue than others. Things like plastics, wire or plastic string can be hard to get to stick due to their shiny surface. Other items can be very delicate and break easily or their textures may be too detailed to be picked up by the ink (e.g. delicate flowers and leaves).
Stick to bold textures and shapes that will contrast next to each other. A whole collage using torn/cut paper shapes can be very effective or a string drawing again creates a strong linear design. Sometimes simply placing an item such as a CD or sponge on the centre of the print works well as a bold pattern.
3. When you have collected your items together either use a pencil to draw your design onto the cardboard base or just start sticking the items directly onto the plate building your design as you go along. Use a generous amount of PVA glue. The most absorbent materials will soak up the ink and produce dark areas of the print and shiny non-absorbent materials will not hold the ink and be the lighter or unprinted areas of the image.