York Printmakers normally meet in the pub once a month where we chat about our work and share ideas. Having moved our get-togethers online, by Autumn many of us were finding that it was difficult to find the motivation to produce prints when there was so much anxiety about the future. Exhibitions and fairs had been cancelled and the future for the arts was looking bleak.
So we started a monthly Postcard Print Challenge.
The incentive to produce a themed small A6 print once a month and share it at our Zoom meeting was just the nudge many of us needed to get us back into some kind of creative rhythm. There’s nothing like a deadline to focus the mind!
So far our themes have been SPEED, FIRE, AUTUMN, BORDERS and EDGES, and REFLECTIONS. This month’s theme is FRAGMENTS.
Contributions are uploaded to a PowerPoint and shared via Zoom. The prints are discussed in the same way we would do at one of our meetings. Printmaking is such a diverse subject and there are so many different ways of creating original prints. We’ve enjoyed examples of etching, collagraph, linoprint, and stencilling as well as digital, photographic and combined process imagery. We all get to see a good size image of each artist’s print and everyone has time to describe and discuss their work. It has been fascinating to see and hear about the different approaches to each theme, from literal to conceptual, figurative to abstract. It has also been a great way of keeping the momentum going within the group, of sharing various techniques and ideas. It has certainly spurred some of us on to try out ideas influenced by the discussions during the meetings. Thank goodness for sharing and collaboration – it never fails to inspire. There’s no pressure to produce a print and for some it has been lovely just to turn up on Zoom and enjoy the show!
Here are some of the prints that have been created over the past 6 months.