Tag Archives: Lynette Weir

Waratah Tryptich – A Fine Art Linocut

8 Waratah Tryptich - Limited Edition Handcoloured Linocut 1

Well anyone who has followed me on this blog for a while will know I LOVE Waratahs.

Drawing Images-WARATAH 2 ILLUSTRATION 1 WEB

There is such a majesty & structural quality to these particular Australian wildflowers not withstanding their bright red colouring with deep green leaves & the fact the flowers occur on long stems coming up from the ground. They really can be ‘seen from afar’ as their name means.

For a while now I have planned to do a Tryptich design using waratahs as a kind of companion print for my Flannel Flower Tryptich. This particular print was a commission for someone as a gift for his wife’s birthday. Did I mention I also LOVE flannel flowers too?

Flannel Flower Tryptich

Last year after my shoulder surgery I found it really difficult to work at all for a few months which was most frustrating! I knew I had to slowly get back so I started with thinking through ideas for new designs & taking some photos.

Eventually I was able to at least draw so one of the first artworks I started on was my Waratah Triptych.

I already knew I wanted to make it into a triptych & I had taken some photos pf both red and white waratahs over the years so decided to incorporate both into this design.

1 Waratah Tryptich - White Waratahs 1 WEB 4

I worked as I usually do. First with the framework for the design, then trawling through the hundreds of images I have of waratahs and finding suitable ones for this particular artwork. This process is interesting for me as I gradually reduce the amount of images I want to work with so I refine the vision I have for this work. I ask questions like – is my point of view from below or above? do I want to abstract any of the images or stay more true to for? How simple do I want the work to be visually? How much black do I want to incorporate? DO I really want to keep the defining structure I started with or would I prefer to break out and change it a little? or a lot?

Eventually I end up with a series of images which I will use as the basis of the work. I then start the drawing.

SKETCHBOOK - Flannel Flower & Waratah Trytiches WEB

Drawing is a process I love and have always loved. I feel that all artists no matter their medium of choice a strong skill base in drawing will always hold them in good stead. It teaches you to look more closely and especially in my case where I like the get the wildflowers I use botanically correct. Even if in the carving of the wildflowers compromise is made as to how they are depicted due to the process of carving lino, I know that they have started as botanically correct.

These are the final drawings of the three panels of the triptych.

DRAWINGS - Waratah Trytich WEB

When it comes to working the drawings into designs that can be carved I again work through creating black and white inked versions. This refines my designs and allows me to experiment with what I think I may be able to carve. These days after having to have shoulder surgery, I really value the ability to still be able to carve my linocuts so I guess for me if I have a clear template of what I want to carve it means I will hopefully will be able to a long time into the future.

Waratah Tryptich DEsign 5

I then transfer these final designs onto the lino ready to carve.

I must say after initially deciding to start small when starting back carving I just could not resist getting stuck into these three larger panels! It was weeks of carving and I must say did challenge my shoulder’s capacity to comply & caused a bit of pain. But I do have the most wonderful masseuse and physiotherapist who both help keep me on the straight and narrow & take away the pain!

And to printing!

For this particular design I decided to just do a colour rough using photoshop just to get an idea of the balance of the colour before handcolouring.

Finally I get to print the designs and then handcolour them! Finally I get to see the original concept from a few years ago actually come to fruition. I am really pleased with the results.

Lynette WEir - Waratahs Tryptich - June 2013 WEB

Here is a little video about the whole process from inspiration to Fine Art Linocut.

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Blue Mountains Wildflowers Fine Art Linocut – A Step back in Time

Lynette Weir -Blue Mountains Wildflowers - Oct 2013 WEB

The linocut ‘Blue Mountains Wildflowers’ is really a step back in time for me on many levels from the design inspirations to my memories of this region. As I’ve spoken about before I love the Blue Mountains region west of Sydney, it has such a rugged beauty & the flora & fauna is integral to the whole region. The Blue Mountains has a strong Art Deco influence in architecture and design & examples of that can found throughout the small villages along the ridges leading all the way to Katoomba & beyond. The area really had its ‘heyday’ in the 1900-1960’s and in particular the 1930’s. This linocut art piece is also grounded in family experiences & an inheritance of sorts.

I guess this artwork had its beginnings with family. Both my family & my husband’s family have been keen visitors to the Blue Mountains for many years. When thinking about the Blue Mountains region I found I had so many stories & photos of that time from my mother-in-law & her family in particular, many of whom still live in the Blue Mountains. From honeymoons to day trips and in fact, it is where my husband & I had our honeymoon. It was also somewhere we took our kids for day trips, holidays & to visit family & friends as well.

The wildflowers of this region are truly spectacular. The waratahs & flannel flowers are two of the iconic Australian wildflowers found here & of course I could not go past the ‘Mountain Devils’ – Lambertia formosa – which I have childhood memories of the seedpods dressed up with tulle on sticks like cupie dolls but there are some more vivid examples of these dolls in this newspaper article! I actually still have a couple of  my mother-in-law’s tulle simple versions in an old china cabinet from her ‘nic-nacs’ which I just haven’t been able to part with. So the central panel of this work for me just had to be these three wildflowers.

A lot of research goes into investigating the species of an area, then I always take my own photographs & drawings of each of the species. This helps me to understand the structure of each plant & flower & increases the draftsmanship & design of the piece. There are usually so many I then have plenty to choose for the design.

So a little gallery in of inspirational wildflowers for Blue Mountains Wildflowers.

When my mother in law passed away a few years ago we inherited an old Art Deco style mirror. Looking a little shabby & worse for wear it does however have such an interesting shape. So I started with the mirror’s shape then developed that to create the overall structure of the design. It is then a matter of putting together all the research & developing that into the design. I spend a lot of time drawing, I think it is one of my favourite parts of the process. I have always loved drawing.

I see the linocuts as an extension of that & a way to push my vision & drawing further – the art of creative-art thinking. There is the ‘practical’ aspect of what can actually be carved out of lino but then there is the creative side of shapes & patterns. After I have finished the drawing of the design I then photocopy it several times & start to work on the actual linocut design. I use black felt pens to work on the designs, often photocopying, pasting & then using white out to work on this side of the designing. I guess I am still ‘old school’ in that I love to work with the physicality of paper, pen, pencil & ink but I do sometimes ‘dabble’ with computers & photoshop. I can spend weeks refining the images into exactly what I am happy with in the design & which I am able to produce in the medium.

Then to the carving of the design in lino. I have talked about different type of lino previously but I am pretty settled with the grey Silkcut & even managed to visit their gallery & workshop in Melbourne when I was there last time. I love my new Pfeil linocutting tools as they have made the carving just so much easier reducing the strain on my shoulder. There are actually 12 different blades in my set & I think so far I have only used half of them! Like a painter may use different brushes a Fine Art linocut artist uses their carving tools to create different effect within the surface of the lino. Some use it to create rough textural pieces but mine is a more methodical approach. I see my linocuts as botanical in nature so I try to represent the wildflowers as close to their essence as I can and this includes within the carving to create the images.

An interesting aspect to my work is the ‘uneven’ edges. I do not feel limited by the square or rectangular shapes that lino is usually presented to us from the art shop. I have always sought to move outside these shop bought restrictions. In order to do that I need to carefully cut back the edges. I start by making several strong cuts into the from surface of the lino. I then very carefully split the lino edge I want to remove & fold it towards the hessian back. Then I turn the lino over & cut along the hessian backing with a sharp bladed knife.

Often there can be a rough edge which is not something I want to be on my print. So I carefully remove the rough edges until I have a clean smooth cut. You need to take care especially around pieces with more ‘organic’ lines rather than the straight edges within this particular design.

Then to the printing of the linoblock. I have talked printing previously so here is just a little gallery for ‘Blue Mountains Wildflowers’

Then the handcolouring. I print with oil-based ink & handcolour with watercolour. I like that I can sue multiple layers & colours within each section to create the overall vibrancy of the wildflowers. You will see on the first ‘handcolour proof’ patches of colour & notes on which colour mixes I used. Although the aim is to paint each one the same you can appreciate that each one is actually individually painted & there are always variations.

Blue Mountains Wildflowers - A Fine Art Linocut

Here is a little video from photos about this whole process of creating Blue Mountains Wildflowers.  For those who don’t want to read explanations & learn better through images rather than words, you can now watch it in a little video format.

Seaside Wildflowers – Fine Art Linocut Tutorial Video

– Seaside Wildflowers –

The Development of a new Fine Art Linocut

Design work – value adding with commercial projects

As many of you know it is extremely difficult to survive on just income from being an artist. Essentially when people have spare money they will buy work and when money becomes a little more difficult to come by pictures for walls become a luxury. So I have tried to ‘value add’ to me work a little.

I have done this largely to this point with quality commercially print wildflower card designs. They allow people the luxury for a small amount of money to have an image of your work – in fact many people who cannot afford the artwork buy the cards and even frame them. You could extend this buy producing posters but until this point I have not done this. there is enough confusion over individually hand made and editioned linocuts and commercially mass-produced prints.

Here are the two sets of prints I have sold over the past 10 years – I am about to organise and produce a new line of cards this year.

Through developing a website and blog I have managed to get a few extra projects, commissions or have had my work used for various projects. I do get a number of project offers a year but do not always take them up due to a number of factors including time restraints or the project is not in line with how I want my work represented.

Following are some examples of how my work has been used – some income producing and others are for charity.

Commissions

Advertising you can take commissions is a good way to boost extra work I have done this in the past but due to time restraints for caring for my family have put it back on the backburner for the time being. You do need to eb disciplined with your time and work to a schedule and to the clients request but it can be an interesting challenge to set yourself.

The two below were for an exhibition I was invited to present at Hazelhurst Regional Community Gallery – Sutherland Shire.

Kurnell – An endangered ecological community

Flannel Flowers for a 40th Birthday.

Hanna Group – Drink Coaster

I have produced a design for a drink coaster for the Hanna Group

Eat Chocolate and Cry – Australian Flute Music – CD Cover

One of my designs – Paperbark– was used on the cover for a new CD by musicians Christine Draeger, Lamorna Nightingale and Jocelyn Edey-Fazzone. It is called Eat Chocolate and Cry – Australian Flute Music 199-2009 featuring Australian contemporary composers.  As part of the HSC Music course students must study this content and so this CD is designed a a resource as well as for highlighting contemporary composers and musicians.

The CD was launched at the Australian Music Centre in The Rocks Sydney at the end of September – more information about the cd can be found here.

The Sturt’s Desert Pea design below was using in an English Textbook.

Some of my tutorials on linocuts and working methods was including in this WA Visual Arts high school textbook.

Last year I was contacted by Lynda Kuntyj and asked to contribute to a resource textbook to help support the new Western Australian Visual Arts Curriculum for Primary/Secondary students.

I am very interested in promoting the visual arts and in teaching/tutoring, having a degree in art education. After speaking to Lynda, who is obviously passionate about teaching, I contributed some of my images, working arts practice methodology and tutorial text.

Impact Publishing released this book early this year and you can find out more about this book here. There is a pdf file with sample pages from this book that you can download – this includes 2 of the pages with some of the information that I contributed.

This is one of the textbooks from of a series of three. They all look quite helpful as resources for art teachers and students even though it is the WA syllabus the information looks like it would be useful generally.

Charity work includes: the Big Ride for the Big Issue

My ‘Emblems’ design was used on some bike shorts for the charity event ‘The Big Ride’ for The Big Issue.

Here is a photo of the participants wearing their new jersey’s with my Australian Floral Emblems design on them!

Wildflower Print Designs

The designs below are a selection from wildflower print designs I have been playing around with. At one stage a fabric designer for quilting fabric was going to produce a range of my work in fabric but that was placed on hold.

The difficulty with these designs is the start-up capital needed to produce them myself which is why I have not proceeded with them at this point.

…wattle…waratahs…flannel flowers…gum nuts…

…fabric…paper…design…still deciding….

…and some black and white designs as well…

 

Copyright – Lynette Weir