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Ruth very kindly offered me a one to one mentoring session today to give me an insight into the possibilities of collagraph printing.

To save time, Ruth suggested that I used her plates to explore the various inking techniques she wanted to show me. We started with black ink and Ruth gave me all sorts of hints and tips regarding equipment to use during inking to create a variety of effects – a wire scourer, netting and other textures and stencils to name a few.

After an initial test print, Ruth then showed me viscosity printing and this was where the endless possibilities of this art form became apparent. I had no idea such a rich and complex print could be created from passing the plate through the press just once. Using a colour palette of gorgeous jewel colours to contrast with the black, Ruth showed me how to create some really dramatic effects.

Both these prints (top & bottom) use the same plate and colours but have been inked in a different order and different stencils used.



The turquoise ink had plate oil added to it so that it repelled the orange ink which was rolled over afterwards. This technique resulted in gorgeous textures and unexpected results which was fun to explore.


Our busy work station after lots of experiments.


I’d like to thank Ruth for her time today and for sharing her knowledge and ┬áskills with me. I’ve come away with lots of ideas to try over the next few weeks.

All prints shown here use Ruth’s plates.