Final Project: Rubber printingPosted: March 17, 2014
Stephen Fowler is an illustrator with lots of experience in rubber printing. We were therefore delighted to attend a workshop with him. Straight away, he invited us to create our own designs and experiment with the possibilities the technique offers.
First of all, a rough sketch or drawing with a graphite is transferred onto the rubber itself, which is then carved with a craft knife. I opted for a zigzag pattern before embarking on the silhouette of a toddler or a pet. Even with the simple design, I ran into problems straight away as I did not carve away from the artwork. If you do not do this, it weakens the rigidity of the stamp and the print is not as strong as it should be. It took a few attempts to get it right even with the more straight forward designs.
Also another thing to bear in mind: what to take out and leave on the stamp as well as remembering you will get a reverse image. In other words, planning what you want inked and the negative space is key. It is a very enjoyable technique but it takes practise to get the desired effect.
I enjoyed the workshop but am not sure if or how I will use the rubber printing technique in my final project. I will keep experimenting and decide as I go along if I have any spare time.I am now set on using watercolour for the artwork and as it stands now I have to come up with 16 spreads and incorporating a new medium might prove difficult. I am not sure yet how stamping mixes with the chosen medium. I also bought some lino to experiment with.
I may have a go for a smaller handmade book if time allows me to do so.