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I recently came across Nenad Saljic’s incredible photographs of the Matterhorn via an old post on the ISO50 Blog. Saljic has visited Zermatt at the foot of the Matterhorn countless times since 2009 to capture the majestic peak in a range of light and weather conditions. By limiting himself to black and white, the images use the interplay of light and shadow to convey the Matterhorn’s stark beauty.

“I want my images to compress the passing of time – the beauty of the wind and the clouds dancing around the mountain.”

I’m also a big fan of his ongoing Petrified project of black and white images of cave exploration. (see the last image below).

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I’ve just designed and screen-printed these babies for our friends at Hand Baked Arcade.

Handbaked t-shirt


Warm Glow Photo

26Nov12

Warm Glow Photo welcome image

We are pleased to launch Warm Glow Photo, a new branch of Ambigraph focussing on the portrait and wedding market. Ambigraph continues to be the home of our commercial work and personal projects.

Photography is the focus of Warm Glow but we also offer a design service which will develop over time. This includes wedding invites, storybook albums, cards and any other printed materials which use photos from portrait and weddings shoots.

Have a look around the new site and get in touch if you want to book Anna for a photo shoot.


Another photographer we’ve come across that resonated with us because of similarities in approach to our Withdrawing Room project is Rinko Kawauchi. She has an eye for patches of empty sky, interplay of light and shadow, solitude, finding beauty in the ordinary, natural patterns and quiet moments

We came across her work at the recent Contemporary Japanese Photobooks exhibition at The Photographer’s Gallery in London. It fired our interest not just because of the images but also the stunning variety of book formats. Our favorite was a book called Light Navigation by Asuka Katagiri.


After a few sessions tinkering with my Adana press I’m finally getting some decent results. Some research and experimentation led me to the conclusion that dampening the paper gives much better results whether you’re printing with or without ink. Paper quality also made a huge difference, especially to the blind debossing. I used some Fabriano Rosapina 285gsm paper, a cotton-based paper that has a sponginess which gives a nice deep indent, something I wasn’t expecting to manage on such a small hand press. Although it took me some time to get the pressure reasonably even across the print, I’m pleased with how these came out and I’m sure the set up will get quicker now that I’ve got a better grip on how it all works, which papers work etc.

I love how printmaking forces you to slow down which in turn makes you think about what you’re doing more carefully.. and it’s such an immersive and physical experience that it makes it so different to creating images digitally. Plus the end results are so tactile, especially when you get some decent paper stock to work with. I’m planning to dot these around (for example, hidden in library books) as a subtle way of promoting The Withdrawing Room site.. which by the way, has just reached it’s 50th image.

 


I am always in awe of folk who have the focus and patience to work with one technique and give it enough time to gain absolute mastery. I use a range of image-making techniques so I always feel I need to spend more time perfecting my skills.

One of the print studios I find most inspiring is Tugboat Printshop. Their woodcuts are beautifully and meticulously executed, with a stunning use of colour. You can see in the work-in-progress images of their Bonfire woodcut, the laborious process of producing a multi-coloured woodcut. Especially impressive is when the cyan ink is added and the way this combines with other colours to create various shades of brown and green. This sort of technical prowess comes only through experience, practice and patience.

Seeing this kind of thing gives me envy/inspiration to get on with making new work. I am very pleased to have my own print of their dense, psychedelic Forest woodcut.

Tugboat Printshop Forest woodcut


I’ve just received my first custom-made letterpress block in the post! It’s a steel backed photopolymer plate mounted onto type height wood so it’s all ready to print on my Adana press. I’m going to use it to create some postcards to promote our The Withdrawing Room project. The clarity of detail is superb but I’ll have to see how it comes out once it’s on press. I’ll post photos of the prints as soon as I’ve had a chance to get the press up and working.

I drew the design in pencil, then scanned it, traced in Adobe Illustrator, tweaked and tidied and then sent off to Centurion Graphics to create the plate. The block itself is a desirable object, almost lickable. I’m really interested in the crossover between digital creation and handmade production especially in relation to printmaking so the potential of this kind of thing is most exciting, especially with a little press of my own to work with. More to come!

The block itself:

custom letterpress block

custom letterpress block close up

The finished Illustrator artwork:TWR design


We’ve created the packaging design for a new flavour in the Twiss Drinks range, Apple & Blackcurrant.. In the shops now.

Twiss Drinks apple & blackcurrant can design


We finally got sent our copy of the JK Flesh limited edition LP, screen-printed on to reversed grey board for that crusty feel. What a pleasure to see this in the flesh finally! The labels came out especially well, providing variations on the theme that don’t appear on the CD version.

We were also pleased to see that the album artwork was featured in Creative Bloq’s 20 best album covers of 2012 so far post.

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