Monday, March 5, 2012

Viscosity Printing

I attended a demo the other day on viscosity printing lead by Judy Chambers. Judy does beautiful work and it was wonderful to watch her do her thing. I hope I can remember everything. Luckily I took notes and snapped pictures. If you attended and notice anything I missed, please comment!

Here's Judy's plate. Here she's worked on top of unfinished masonite using regular house paint (Glidden) because it smooths out nicely and doesn't leave brush marks. In some areas Judy has carved into the masonite with various tools--wood carving plus scraper, for instance. In other areas Judy has applied Future Floor Wax (which by the way has been renamed Pledge® Premium Finish with Future® Shine) which makes the plate nice and shiny and creates white areas when wiping intaglio. With viscosity printmaking you need a  plate that has the number of levels that match the number of inks you'd like to use, rollers in different durometers for each level/ink, and a shot of tequila to get yourself through it. OK, just kidding on that last part. But with viscosity printing you need to embrace the variation. You could follow the same map twice and end up at a different destination. In this demo, Daniel Smith process colors were used on dampened Rives BFK. Judy applied ink in the following order:

1. An intaglio wipe (black), out of can with easy wipe added.
2. A roll up of ink (yellow) thinned with plate oil with easy wipe added--look how drippy. For the loose ink roll, Judy used a hard roller and didn't apply much pressure when rolling onto the plate.

3. A medium viscous ink (red) roll, that in this case is straight out of the can, except for a little easy wipe. Here Judy used a medium roller (which apparently is the standard roller unless noted) and applied medium pressure when rolling on top of the yellow.

4. A roll of very thick ink--ink that has been mixed with magnesium carbonate (blue) and some easy wipe. For this stiff ink, Judy used a soft roller and used super hard pressure when rolling up the plate.

Here are pictures after each roll:

Yellow, loose ink on hard roller with easy roll. Judy mentioned the plate can have a touch up roll with this first color without dire consequences since there is really no pressure used--just the weight of the roller.

Here's after the second roll using red, which was the medium viscosity ink using medium roller with medium pressure on roll.

Here's after the third roll using stiff blue ink with soft roller with super hard force on roller. 

Artist: Judy Chambers, 2012
Artist: Judy Chambers, 2012
Here's the finished print!

Judy inked and wiped the plate a second time changing things up a bit.

For this print, Judy used a blue/black for the intaglio wipe, then a gold for the loose ink and a purple for the medium ink and skipped the stiff ink entirely. She used the hard and medium rollers, respectfully.

Judy referred us to the viscosity section of The Complete Printmaker for more information.


Cathy Savage said...

Another thing, Judy took meticulous notes! She documented every piece of info on her printing methods, trying to learn everything she could about viscosity printmaking. Her notebook alone was impressive.

Screen printing oklahoma city said...

It’s not really something for me but I bet this will be useful for many other bloggers. I love how you guys keep updating and adding new awesome features. Keep up the good work!

Judy chambers said...

The collagraph plate is made with the intention of using surface treatments to create a variety of both light and dark areas when printed in the intaglio method. I learned this technique from Lennox Dunbar at a workshop in Santa Fe presented by Making Art Safely. This involves using materials like High Gloss Water Based Acrylic Enamel paints (Glidden-Evermore and Behr Premium Plus work great), Future Floor Finish, etc. to add to the board to produce a smooth surface that will wipe clean and materials like Micaceous Iron Oxide (Golden product), sawdust or carborundum grit, etc. added to a medium to create places on the plate that will hold the ink and create dark areas. The board (MDF, etc.) itself has a med. light plate tone and drawing into the plate surface will also create black areas or lines. This process created raised and lowered surfaces that I used in printing in the viscosity method but in the viscosity inking, it doesn't rely on the smooth or rough surface, but on the raised and lowered surface as far as I can tell.

Navage said...

I took the Lenox workshop ! He's great ! Theses are great pictures thanks much for sharing . I'm very bad at taking notes at a workshop. I always think I will do better ....this is a lovely refresh thank you all so much for sharing. I found the very thin board he brings in from the uk here in inthink it was Kentucky if anyone's interested. I think I hope I can still find info had a crash since then?

jean-claude said...

I appreciate very much Judy notes.
I personally refer to Krishna Reddy methods described in his book Intaglio Simultaneous Color Printmaking.
Marvelous process, only constraint with it needs cleanning all rollers each printing.

Viscosity said...

Great post! Been looking for some info on this. Thanks!

Trisha Gupta said...

Dear Judy,
Thank you for taking notes. I would love a copy of the notes or a way to contact the artist. I am working in callograph and desperately want to find a way to use viscosity printing.