The blog of Hannah Robinson, artist, illustrator and graphic designer.

Thursday, 8 September 2011

The Fun Fiasco - Lino Printing

Today all my purchases arrived from ebay, so I was good to go with my lino printing! To say I was excited was an understatement. Now, before you read any further, there are some things you ought to know. Firstly, it's been a while since I've lino printed. As in years. Secondly, I don't have my own home, my own workspace or my own printing press. And thirdly, I'm not one to let the things mentioned in Secondly hold me back. So, without further ado...
Whilst cooking dinner I thought about the things I could do with my two small pieces of lino I had. I settled on two ACEO sized prints, one of Peterborough Cathedral which I can't seem to get enough of lately, and one which would meet a brief set by a collaborative I am part of, roartalent. We had to illustrate a holiday we had been on, so I decided to do fish and chips (I ate a lot of it in Cromer, the seaside town we went to).

I bought this tray for £1! Look how well it serves as somewhere to roll the ink! I'm pretty proud of my solution to the "no equipment, no space" hurdle.

 I started carving Peterborough Cathedral, and I suddenly remembered how difficult lino can be. My admiration for the lino artists increased, and with it my doubt in my own abilities. I forged on though.
Here are the first few prints. I'm just getting used to the amount of ink, and the amount of pressure to apply ('pressure' meaning either going at it with a clean roller, or pressing my hands on the lino with all my weight. Technical stuff). This is my Peterborough Cathedral print.

So, the inevitable happened. Three times, actually. I rammed the blade of the lino-cutting tool into my middle finger. And I know the bandage looks like a slight overreaction, but believe me I tried an ordinary plaster, and lets just say it wasn't doing its job. I made a lot of mess. But I had just the thing to cheer me up...
 Now for the fish and chips. I only have blue ink for now (in case you haven't guessed) but I'm looking forward to trying new colours. All in all, I'm pleased with tonight's effort: it's been a long time since I've done this, I've overcome shortage of space, shortage of equipment and shortage of non-bleeding fingers.
To round off I want to salute all the lino-printers out there who make AMAZING images that continue to wow me daily. I'm not there yet, but I will be!


  1. I haven't done any lino printing for years either! I have the tools, but I'm afraid it's not one of my strong points =p
    I think yours turned out well =] the cathedral looks great!...well worth losing a finger over haha


  2. These are amazing!
    I have never tried lino printing and desperately want to give it a go - I too bought some equipment from Ebay about a month ago, but haven't had the time to get stuck in!
    Wish me luck when I do make a start!!
    And I am now forwarned to stock up the first aid kit ;D
    Jo x

  3. these look great! I think the repeat of the fish and chips looks fab on one sheet, seems a shame to cut it into ACEOS. Did you try warming the lino a little? it makes it a bit easier to cut and i think cutting into a small piece of lino is much more difficult/dangerous than cutting into a large piece and trimming it down afterwards. Happy printing:)

  4. These are great, and yes I have managed to cut myself no end recently. I think it was trying to watch t.v. at the same time as cutting :-D I love both designs, and think they look great in the blue you have.

  5. I haven't done ant lino prints for a few years, I'm sure I have some in a box somewhere, I need to search the loft me thinks.
    Thank you for sharing.

    Jan x

  6. I think these are great; you will be producing lots in no time and hopefully with no more injuries.
    I like the repeat fish and chip design too on one sheet!