The Tell-Tale Heart Having enjoyed the experience of woodcutting, I pushed to develop my process and techniques. The history of woodcut and line-art printing dates far behind us, and has been a common medium— at a point in history, the only one available other than oral— for storytelling. Reflecting on my previous work in my woodcutting process, I felt it lacked depth conceptually and wasn’t accomplishing the storytelling that it is capable of. Because of recent reading and interest in Edgar Allan Poe, I wanted to visually represent the summary of “A Tell-Tale Heart”. I felt that it’s literary prestige and content merits the use of line-art and the woodcut method of print. The lines are jagged and skittish to convey the deteriorating mind of the speaker and sadistic unravelling plot. Since last hand-in I studied the tell-tale heart at great depth, illustrating a variety of designs before carving. In the story Poe writes about the old mans ‘beady eye’ and how he watches the man sleeping for eight nights before committing murder and hiding his body parts under the floorboards. In my woodcut I carved small ‘8’s as stars to represent the nights. Four knives to signify the amount of limbs chops off, furthermore, hiding them under the floorboards. The police are called as neighbours hear screams from the house.
Right: Final woodcut printed on silver mountboard Left: Purple mountboard print
Step Away From the Screen This screen print was based on trying to emphasize the use of printmaking in comparison to the digital format where the process is far too precise and the connection between the artist and work is lost. I hand-illustrated all the imagery on the screen to add to the aesthetics of the design, and then experimented with creating multi-coloured layers at a larger A1 format. I encounter many challenges during the creation of the poster; the power hose wasnâ€™t working properly so it was difficult removing the emulsion. Parts of the illustrations were distorted and began peeling â€” mainly the computer and footâ€” therefore, I masked of that section which put me a week behind schedule. Overall the experiment of printmaking in several layers has taught me a lot: it is a far more technical process during which mishaps may occur and projects can often be behind schedule. Something I will have to take in consideration for my Final Major Project.
Since last hand-in I finished the final poster devolping a large quanty of different colours. Being intially annoyed at the facilties not working for me, it has taught me a lot. I know what to look our for when I am working on my FMP.
Left: Final screenprint poster. Right: The two different layers i exposed onto my screen
Native - Wood Carving Having been highly influenced by the native culture whilst out in Canada, I created a woodcut on my experiences and interpretations of the style the Native American artwork. Artists such as Roy Henry Vickers and Norval Morrisseau have influenced my style of illustration for the wood cut and I find there work have follows a pattern that is concise and beautiful. I purchased a large piece of MDF from Wickes and began carving my illustrations. The carving process was very time consuming and heavy duty at times. Trial and error was used throughout my carving, I printed as much as I was able in my room with the materials I have– mainly at a small A4 format with a hand roller. After experimenting with printing on coloured mount board (it held the inks well), the final piece was printed on Arches 88, 300gsm Y, cream and has a lovely texture and richness I am very pleased with. I have two colour ink editions being Red and Black. Again this is also a woodcut I managed to print after last hand-in. I realsied after printing that aethtically its all well and good that the print looks eyecatching, however it lacked content and reason behind the imagery. Therefore, I created the woodcut ‘The Tell-Tale Heart’, using the same methods however creating depth in the piece.
Right: Final woodcut/ Red. Printed on Arches 88, 300gsm paper. Left: The woodcut itself before being inked
WOODCUT PRINT -COMING SOON-
Native - Collograph Further devolving my woodcut style for native art, I explored another technique in printmaking; collograph. After many sketches for a design of an aboriginal mask I chose the one you see here. Unfortunately, during the construction of the original illustration, the board became quickly hidden under several layers of materials pasted on top of each other and I was forced to improvise the original image. I used leaves as a back ground to bring a natural and organic feel to the pieces whilst for the mask I choose a variety of highly decorative wallpaper which would hopefully create interesting patterns and textures. I drew the teeth with a glue gun and the outline of the face was made by string. After varishing several coats onto my collograph I was ready to print. Reflecting on the piece I am not completly pleased witht the outcome. I think the print needs some solid colours intergrated in the design so make the piece crisper and stand out more. Whilst printing I encounted problems with inking the leaves, even though being varnished the leaves had dried so much they began crubling and sticking into the inks onto the roller.
New North Press I was very fortunate to be chosen as one of the selected few for the workshop at New North Press with Graham Bignell. We were all assigned to choose a work, sentence or quote. My selection was ‘Virtuoso’, which I feel personally is where I would like to see myself in the future; to be highly skilled at a particular subject within design. As our lines accumulated, we realized not all the words would fit on the page, so we began shrinking and cropping until it sat nicely on the page.
Since printing the final poster the design was featured in Graham Bignells ‘Reverting to Type’ private gallery (Thursday 9th December) at Old Street, alongside many other great letter pressed posters. The event had a great turn out and I managed to get chatting to a few designers about the process and the future of print making in the graphic design industry.
Zine-a-Week A series of Zines created with Ben Gardiner, Ben Ewing, Chris Vickers, James Fraser and Robert Wilson. Each week we assigned ourselves a topic for which we would create imagery for two double spreads each. So far the zines are: Repetition, Anti, Wet, Discovery, Revival and Bizarre. We have future plans to handbind all of the zines and approach independent bookshops to sell the zines as a series. The zines can be found on my blog on page one as an Issuu online magazine. Over the Christmas break we have also assigned the title â€˜Quicheâ€™ to be ready for Januray.
Blog Post: NOV 22nd/NOV 15th/NOV10th
Illustrations Illustration has been a big part of my projects this year because I have wanted to improve upon my technique and develop my own style. Though I have been drawing a lot of native inspired imagery, I still find it unnatural to draw in this particular style. However, I highly enjoyed pushing myself out of my comfort zone. I have also been trying to improve my illustration style using Adobe Illustrator, which I have always put off because it didn’t feel natural drawing in a computer programme. I have bought a new journal after completing my previous one. In this sketchbook I developed a lot of my ideas for my ‘Tell-Tale Heart’ woodcut.
Blog Post: OCT 18th
LinoCut I began illustrating abstract people trying to push what shapes can be used to create a portrait. I have a series of these guys in my sketchbook. I think they could work nicely in a small zine or even just as a multiple of images in a frame. Further development of the individuals so they have stories and character is a direction I would like to explore. I am going to try and approach a writer to create short stories based on each character.
Xmas Cards There’s nothing better than receiving a lovely Christmas card, but I twisted the jolly spirit and designed my own interpretation of Christmas. ‘Santa is Evil’ were my chosen words for the card and an illustration of Santa with evil spiky teeth and large, bulbous eyes, and a pointy nose felt appropriate. I hand-printed a few in my room as testers but the final woodcut was printed in uni on thicker card and with more crisp inks.
Screen Print Collage This is screen-printing workshop where I collaborated with Ben Gardiner. Our main objective was to have a series of imagery scattered around the page in organized chaos. We experienced slight problems as we blew out the screen, so the middle isn’t as clear as we wanted however we discovered we liked the effect it gave. We both created a personal touch with our own names included in the print: ‘Kitney & Gardiner’
Blog Post: OCT 14th
I have always been interested in collage but I don’t regard it as something I want to push for FMP. I do feel it can trigger ideas especially for page layouts by experimenting with overlaying objects. I try to use interesting textures and materials within my collages like the Arabian style piece uses tiles as a backdrop (Fig 1). I have had an idea of pushing collage as a new street art style; large walls covered in collage style art could really stand out and liven a space. I would apply the imagery on the walls with wallpaper paste, however the only problem is the artwork would be very unreliable with the British weather, possibly that’s a good thing?
Blog Post: OCT 20th
Busking Film Printmaking Something I have never done before was busking. It has always been a goal of mine to try busking. So, with my guitar in one hand and my plectrum in the other I pottered into London on the quest for the perfect spot to busk for some pennies. After a few hours of serenading the British public with my acoustic, I walked away with a quid in my back burner (tax free)â€Śtake that recession! This suddenly backfired. On my travels home I got shafted with a ÂŁ20 fine on the train as my Young Persons card was out-of-date. Back in the overdraft!
Blog Post: OCT 18th
On a large piece of MDF I wanted to experiment with printmaking techniques, some were stronger than others but it gave me a great insight of different ways to create prints. Not focusing on a concept, I began exploring different methods to create mark making. Some of these techniques were gluing staples to the board as a collograph, furthermore using a glue gun, I drew a tree onto the board and coated the area in ink. I then removed the glue, leaving a tree silhouette.
Blog Post: NOV 4th
Clown Zine I have been a bit obsessed recently with scary clowns; I like their demonic characteristics juxtaposed to the stereotype of playful innocence. Whilst in Vancouver I entered a gloomy antique shop in a basement and snuggled in a suitcase was a small book entitled Scary Clowns, this instantly grabbed my attention and it was physically impossible for me to leave the grim antique shop without the book. The book planted a seed and thus became inspiration for my zine. I also included cutouts from a book called ‘Gothic Asians’ that helped accentuate the tone of the zine.
Blog Post: OCT 14th
Clown Film A short film based on my fanzine ‘Let’s all Laugh at the Death of a Clown’. Still intrigued by scary clowns, I tried to capture the static clowns in the zine and portray what that experience might be like in real life. Even though I hired the Canon Mark II that shoots in HD, I didn’t want to rely on the camera to capture high quality footage; my priority was to frame interesting shots and shoot an engaging short film. I used a strobe light as a lighting effect on some of the shots that enabled me to further experiment in Final Cut with stylistic footage.
Blog Post: OCT 12th
Independent Practice Exploring printmaking was always an ambition of mine now having facilities available at the university. I really wanted to test my skills I have in different methods of printmaking. I explored many techniques suck as Linocut, Woodcut, Screen-printing, Chinese Woodcut & Collograph. I found each process a learning curve, screen-printing. I most definitely found myself heading into a final direction as shown in my woodcut â€˜The Tell-Tale Heartâ€™ it created more depth and structure in my work. Basing the woodcut on a book as well it gave me a message to work to, having to clarify to a certain extent why each mark was made and what meaning it holds. Other print making methods have also helped me develop skills as a designer, screen printing was a great eye opener to page awareness, combining illustration with typography in multiple layers. In contrast working on other areas of designs such as the zines has been a great project, combining my work with other great designers in the class has kept me focus, furthermore working in other design formats often helped me generate ideas for other projects.
Bibliograpy Books Type Design: Radical Innovations & Experimental. Teal Triggs. Harper Collins Publishers Letterhead & Logo Design 7. Sayles Graphic Design. Rockport Wordless Books. The orginal Graphic Novels. Peter Kuper & David A. Beona. Abrams Printmaking. A complete guide to Materials and Processes. Beth Grabowski & Bill Fick. Laurence King Publsihing One Hundred Best Album Covers. Powell, Aubrey and Storm Thorgerson. (1999) . Dorling Kindersley Limited Sampler 3: Radical Album Cover Art. Adrian Shaughnessy. (2003) Laurence King. House Industries Typography. Robert Klanten. (2008) Magazines Eye Magazine (2010) Elephant Magazine (2010)
FMP proposal Tee-shirt Company/Branding Proposed Media/Outcome To develop and establish a tee-shirt company. Creating a collection of Limited Edition screen-printed tee shirts. Brief Description of Area of Research Content or Subject of Project In great depth I will research and market for my target audience, by talking to customers who will ultimately wear my product. Developing a series of different unique tee shirts will create a range of development and process. I am eager to print my own illustrations & photography onto the tee shirts, to make them as personal as possible. I was very keen of my final woodcut â€˜the Tell-Tale Heartâ€™ possibly a series of designs based on books/short stories/poems? Not only am I looking to print funky designs onto a tee shirts, am I looking to start a company which would involve a series different methods in design such as logo design, clothing labels, a website, branding, marketing, screen printing and business cards. I feel having the knowledge I have accumulated during my course at UCA I am fully competent to pull this of, I am fully aware if will take a lot of time management but intrigued and excited by the project at hand. Key Dates Proposed Production Timeline/Schedule A project at this great calibre will have to involve an in depth schedule and I will have to be very harsh on meeting deadlines set by myself. Everything will have to be in place and be at a high standard to make the FMP successful. Evidence of Practical Experience/Knowledge to Support Proposal As shown in my external positioning I have always been fond on approaching tee shirt companies submitting designs etc. however I see myself more as an independant designer now, and I would like to work for myself. Additionally I have added experience this semester to different mediums I had basic knowledge of before, such as website designing and branding of a new company from scratch. Of course I still hold a great passion towards screen-printing and feel I have still so much to explore and learn.
Intended Audience My target audience would be the general public interested in the tee shirts I put out. I will try and be innovative in my designs to create a unique identity for my company. Relationship to your Established Eternal Positioning I feel the branding of my own tee-shirt company could be highly beneficial as many design studios create branding for companies, I have noticed this whilst working at Overthrow Productions. A branding project will also extend my skills on computer programmes, which I feel I lack in comparison to many students graduating from other universities. The tee-shirt company would also enable me to explore marketing at a higher level from which I studied in Vancouver.
Aaron Kitney www.aaronkitney.com