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I have used some of my initial first drawings and watercolour illustrations to see how they would look as Lino prints. To do this I copied the original drawings and used them as a stencil to then work around when cutting into the lino.

It has been a while since I last did lino cutting so I couldn’t remember if it looked better to follow the lines and get a negative or positive of the image, so I tried to do both on different tiles. I only have 3 colours of block printing ink: red, green and blue, so I was limited in colour choice, but I tried them all anyway to see how it would look on each of the linocuts.

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I was so pleased with the turn out of these prints that I experimented with colour mixing so see how it would look If I was to layer the colours. Some of them worked more successfully than others, such as the hippo and penguin. My favourite of these four is the giraffe because it has slightly misprinted, and I think that it gives it a childlike, playful element.

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The outcome of these prints then lead me to think about if I could separate the colours when I was printing. This gave me the idea to cover up parts of the lino with masking tape so that when I put the ink on it it would only take where I wanted it to, and then did the same with the opposite space and a different colour, and these were my results:

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This process seemed to work successfully for me and especially the ones with the separate colours. I am very pleased with the outcome because they are minimal shapes and clean lines, but has a slightly rough feel because the ink is not all flat and block colours. Looking at these prints, the colours reminded me of Kurt Schwitters early childrens books that I saw in the Stedelijk museum in Amsterdam.

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I wanted to see how it would look if I was to outline it in the same way as I have my previous illustrations, but this time I used a brush pen because the lines are thicker and in a previous experiment I found that I preferred the thicker, sketcher line to the thin fine-liner.

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As another experiment, I layered the different colours and different linocuts on top of one another and I think that this works really nicely, but would not be suitable for the alphabet fact book as it would be confusing as to what the animal is. I would consider using a pattern like this for the leaves of the book at the beginning and end.

When thinking about the way that I present my pages, one idea that I had was to have double page spreads for each animal, and have an illustration on one side, and the text separately on the opposite page, but have small continuations of the illustrations on the text page, and I think that using the linocuts would be a nice way to carry it on onto the other pages. This is something I will consider when I come to planning out my lay outs.

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