Literature List for March

result from very basic screen printing

This is my literature list post for March. As you can see from the titles listed below, I am and was still very much interested in printing. Last months (Febuary‘s list, January‘s list) I bought books about printing because I was (still) interested in sun printing. While browsing the books I got interested in screen printing. I tried some very, very basic and crude screen printing with a makeshift frame (repurposed picture frame), a fabric mesh I still had lying around, paper stencils, and acrylic paints. In a way I enjoyed the process and am satisfied with the results. I am not sure that I will try again soon, though. Making the stencils was not so much different for me from designing a block print. And I still very much like cutting lino. So I would probably do that again the next time. On the other hand I very much like the look and feel of the print that still shows the fabric mesh. Well, time will show when and whether I’ll try again.

  • Silkscreen Basics: A Complete How-To Handbook by Matteo Cossu. It is a very good book if you want to engage seriously into screen printing, and set up your own screen printing workshop. I am a little bit disappointed since I expected a more basic approach. For example they only treat photographic screen and not stencils. I would have liked some practical advice here: How to attach a stencil to the screen, what kind of paper to use, and so on. Nothing about different screenprinting methods. They are very detailed in what they do talk about, though: They explain in great detail how to built your own screens for example, but also how to built your own exposure unit, or how to deal with registration for multiple color prints. There is a second part which has almost as many pages as the first with a gallery of screenprints of accomplished artists; some of the artists are even featured with an interview. I read only one so far but found this very interesting. Nick Morley is also featured, who I very much admire. I was pleased to see him there, but actually I don’t know why I mention this so prominently, please treat this just as an aside. Well, back to the list:
  • Das Praxisbuch der künstlerischen Drucktechniken von Colin Gale. The original title of this book is “Practical Printmaking”; I didn’t know that the original is in English, otherwise I would have ordered it in English. It is really a shame that amazon doesn’t provide this information. But since I bought it in German translation, I am going to review it in German, as usual:

    Dieses Buch hat mir sehr gut gefallen. Es hat encyclopädischen Charakter, die Kapitel haben unter anderem die Titel: Kaltnadelradierung, Ätzradierung, Fotopolymerdruck, Radierung mit Digitalfotos, Collagedruck, Digitaldruck, Lithografie, Fotolitografie, Siebdruck, Hochdruck, Hochdruck mit Stempeln und Druckstöcken, Monotypie. Die einzelnen Drucktechniken werden sehr kurz und knapp in ihrer Grundidee vorgestellt. Dazu gibt es einen Haufen kleine Tips, die es einem leicht machen – und Lust machen, selbst einfach mal was auszuprobieren. Ein sehr gelungenes Buch, denke ich. Nichts für jemanden, der gerne mit vorgefertigten Projekten in eine neue Technik einsteigt, aber perfekt für alle, die gerne ein bisschen experimentieren.
  • Blueprint to cyanotypes. Exploring a historical alternative photographic process by Malin Fabbri and Gary Fabbri. In a comment to my last literature list, Dinahmow recommended this. This book is great and exactly what I needed. Many thanks, Dinah! Different methods are described, different chemicals and where to get them, questions about toxicity are covered, and where to get all the supplies needed. All my questions are answered. The titles of the main chapters are: Cyanotype history, the cyanotype, making a print, preparing the canvas: cloth, paper and natural fibre fabrics, drying, preparing your image, creating a negative, printing – contact frames, UV sources, exposure times around the world, exposing the print, processing and drying, creatice uses for cyanotypes, colored material, toning cyanotypes, and more. The language used is very clear and easy to understand. Troubleshooting tips are also included. – Perfect! I hope I will find the time to engage once more into this. I am a bit scared about buying chemicals with the kids around, but I feel very much encouraged to try this once more.