Project 2: Positive and negative masks. (Cockerel 1)

Initial focus was on landlord’s chickens – produced a number of sketches and took a variety of photographs.

After researching paper-cuts, I realised that for this to be successful, the shapes: positive and negative needed to be interesting.

I produced a small silhouette study in my small sketchbook, which I thought could be used as a mask.

When observing the chickens I had a thought about how chickens can often remind me of dinosaurs with their movement and also they are their closest living relatives. I found an image online from a French encyclopaedia page which I thought could be incorporated. Unfortunately the image was portrait and my mask was landscape so I manipulated it on the PC and printed out some sheets to print over.

Initially I printed over dry paper and then dampened some.

I had read about ways of dampening delicate papers here, which seemed to work successfully.

When it came to printing I had a few issues:
• When burnishing I was not being consistent across the whole plate and so the result was patchy.
• Registration was an issue, especially with the printed paper – perhaps I was trying to run before I could walk here.

On the positive side:
• Particularly liked the visual texture of the printed paper below the image, perhaps I can use this in a different way in the future so that registering the mask within exactly in the centre of the sheet isn’t such an issue.

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