Waiting for oil based ink to dry … and Handpainting Linocuts

Commission Linocut Colour Working ProofI am still waiting for the commissioned linocut print’s oil based ink I use for printing my linocuts, to dry….I’m sure you all know of waiting on paint to dry…it sometimes, depending on the weather, takes days. Fortunately with printmaking we are using thin even layers (well hopefully – many a print has been discarded due to uneven inking of the block…frustrating at times, and costly) but it still takes time to dry. The weather is quite nice (at least it’s not raining but there is a definite nip in the air which makes even drying the washing on the clotheslines take longer.

The reason for using oil based inks is so that when I handpaint with traditional artist watercolours the oil based ink of the printed area repels the watercolour. If you were to use a waterbased ink (which dries quickly and cleans up with water) then when you come to handpaint it also dissolves the water based ink. Also you get such a lovely lustrous black with the oil based ink which highlights the colour of the transparent watercolour which I also like.

Anyway…in the meantime I have completed the colour proof of the heater dried print – probably not the best for the paper but it is only a working proof (see above for the partial image). It is a working proof which means I record the colours used on the print (just by penciling them in on the border and sometimes painting a little square of colour) and note any changes I would make on the final editioned prints.

Whilst waiting for the ink to dry for the final prints am handcolouring some of the New Zealand Wildflowers prints….

Copyright – Lynette Weir

3 thoughts on “Waiting for oil based ink to dry … and Handpainting Linocuts

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  1. Lyn – I have been looking through your beautiful work and your interesting tutorials – so much great information! Thank you!!
    I am interested to know what paper you use. I have used some of the beautiful cotton printing paper in the past but I found it didn’t take the water colours well, which was disappointing because it is so thick and lovely and beautiful 🙂
    Do you use the cotton based printing paper for the prints you are colouring, or do you use heavy water colour paper… or something completely different?! Thanks!

    1. Hi Sue – thankyou for your kind comments about my work!
      In regards to paper – I haven’t as yet blogged about that…perhaps I should put that on the list to do in the near future. The only problem is the lsit is quite large at the moment!
      I currently use Arches or Saunders Waterford Hot press watercolour paper – it is acid free cotton based – around 300gsm in weight. I have in the past used some lovely acid free handmade Japanese paper with lovely ‘pieces’ of things like mulberry through them. You do however have to be careful when using watercolours as these paper will tend to crinkle or distort in combination with the oil based ink. I find if I limit the amount of water in the watercolour and apply thin layers of colour letting it dry in between layers this can overcome most of these problems. The thinner the paper the easier it distorts when watercolour is added. Sometimes it is a bit of trial and error.
      I hope this helps and I will blog a bit more about paper soon!
      Kind regards

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