Today I have experimented with using the relief press to print each of my animal linocuts. This made a considerable difference to my prints outcomes as I also used better quality printing inks instead of the waterbed block printing ink that I was previously used. I had also hoped that printing my cuts via the press may slightly emboss them if I got the weight correct.
On my first try I hadn’t yet adjusted the weight of the printing press and so it came out too much so the ink only transferred in places and it definitely embossed the paper. I think that they look abstract and I really like the marble-like effect it has given them. This is how they looked:
I then adjusted the height of the press and tried again to see how they would look. I did them in close to their natural colours and on some cuts I experimented with two colours. I am especially pleased with how the giraffe, jaguar, koala, elephant and walrus as this is the first time I have seen them in colours similar to their natural colours, and I think that they look even better with these colours. I am also a lot more pleased with the standard of the better quality ink as a lot more of the detail has come out in my prints in places such as the fur and detail of the faces.
As they are now more similar colours to their natural colours, I am excited to see my project finally feel like it is coming to life and now I am excited to see how they look when put against their backgrounds. The press seemed to make the prints more crisp and clear and the ink didn’t smudge as much as when I was previously just doing by hand.
I am definitely going to use the relief printing press and better quality ink to print my final linocuts as they all look a lot stronger than they did before. When printing the final versions I will make sure that it is all printed without any smudges as there are a few in these prints that make the outlines fuzzy. When I scan them in if there is any ink or messy lines then I can clean them up on photoshop and make the lines straight and clean.