About Lyn Weir

I am an Australian linocut artist living and working on the North Coast of NSW in Australia. My main body of work has been with limited edition linocuts and detailed drawings/illustrations of Australian Wildlfowers and Wildlife.

‘Enkindled’ – Imaginings

I finally got all 66 prints finished on the 12th September & posted for the Rona Green exchange portfolio & exhibtion ‘Imaginings’ which will be exhibited at Neospace Gallery in Melbourne 1-19 December 2017.

‘Enkindled’ draws its inspiration from the beautiful Grevillea rhylitica – Deua Grevillea endemic to the South Coast of NSW around Batemans Bay. It also is part of an exploration of ornamentation, beauty, patterns and embellishments using wildflowers that I have been working on & about in the background for many years whilst my focus has been caring & looking after family, but am just finally now starting to develop into the final artworks.

I have made many visits to this beautiful part of Australia visiting family where I have spent many hours also exploring the lovely Eurobodalla Regional Botanic Gardens. This piece also pays homage to my family who lived there.

This edition of 66 prints is a pretty large edition to print & each print taking at least 90mins each to handcolour. But I got there, with even a few days to spare on the deadline! I use artist watercolours, often blending the colours within the design so it is not a matter of one flat colour. I also paint them as you can see fairly vibrantly not generally in the softer way of traditional watercolours.

Little video of handpainting a different section of the Grevillea linocut ๐Ÿ™‚ My process is to handcolour all of the colours for each print then move to the next. I establish the colours using proof prints, set up the palette of colours, set up a set sequence of handcolouring which I use for each print … then repeat … in this case 66 times. Almost 2/3 of the way though now ๐Ÿ™‚ . . . #linocut #handpainting #instavideo #handcolouredlinocuts #watercolour #StCMill #somersetpaper #printmakerprocess #linocut #grevillea #anartistview #anartiststudio #design #linoprint #linocutartist #printmaker #reliefprint #artist #australianartist #australianart #linoprint #ozplants #instaart #instaartist #instaprintmaker #ig_art #ig_artist

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All printed, handpainted, signed, numbered & packaged ready to send tomorrow ๐Ÿ™‚ Phew!! 'Enkindled' – Handpainted Linocut – Edition 66 prints – for 'Imaginings' – an exchange portfolio collated by @ronagreenart which will be exhibited in Melbourne at Neospace 1-19 Dec 2017 Enkindled draws its inspiration from the beautiful Grevillea rhyolitica endemic to the Sth Coast of NSW, one of my favourite places where I have visited family regularly for many years. . #enkindled #grevillearhyolotica #deuaflamegrevillea #ozplants #linocut #handpaintedlinocut #australianwildflowers #wildflowers #design #anartistview #printmake #australianartist #ig_art #ig_artist #instaartinstaartist #instaprintmaker #StCMill #somersetpaper #get_imprinted #anartiststudio #linoprint #linocutartist #linocutdesigns #printmaker #reliefprint #artist

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‘Enkindled’ – Grevillea Imaginings

Printing a linocut involves some preparation & planning.

I use a the finest wet & dry sandpaper to very gently clean off the surface of the lino block (tiny amount of water) to leave it as smooth as possible for printing.

The paper needs to be cut & a template in which to place the linoblock & paper to make the print fit neatly & consistently as is possible with handprinting on each sheet of paper.

Then setting up the print table so that you can make a clear work process from rolling out ink to placing it into the press. All surfaces should be clean & free as much as is possible of dust etc to help keep each print as clean as is possible.

Then rolling out the ink as evenly as possible initially onto a glass/perspex plate, then the linoblock. It is important to use thin layers of ink – there is a particular ‘hiss’ that you learn to hear when the ink is evenly spread. Under inking will lead to parts of the design showing white spaces & over inking will lead to the smaller grooves carved into the lino filling up & losing the design or thick splodges. The aim is to get the ink rolled as evenly as possible to transfer the design you have carved at its optimum. Not an easy task! Especially when printing the 66 in this edition. Invariably some will not make the grade so plan to print more than the edition so you can get as many as possible as clean & clear.

Finally I use a small book press but you can use larger presses, etching presses (better for single colours than mulitple colours for registration issues) or rubbing the back of the paper placed on the block with a wooden spoon, baren or something similar.

Once the designs are printed they need to be placed somewhere safe to dry. I have a drying cupboard my Dad made for me many years ago. Others have custom drying racks or hanging peg racks.

Here are few photos from Instagram showing the printing progress.

Prepping for printing involves a sharp pencil, a metal ruler, paper for calculations & measuring skills ๐Ÿ™‚ And a trip to the local town newsagency for a lovely clean new piece of cardboard ๐Ÿ™‚ Unfortunately it takes me a tad longer as I have trouble with straight lines! LOL Think it also involves starting with coffee & a good music playlist!! PS – Have left the photo box making to hubby ๐Ÿ™‚ . . . . . #linoprinting #preparingtoprintalinocut #measuring #straightlines #gettingintotheprintinggroove #printmakerprocess #linocut #grevillea #reliefprinting #linoprinting #anartistview #anartiststudio #printing #design #linoprint #linocutartist #linocutdesigns #printmaker #reliefprint #artist #australianartist #australianart #linoprint #ozplants #instaart #instaartist #instaprintmaker #ig_art #ig_artist

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Carvings – Grevillea Imagining

A series of photographs from Instagram of the progression of carving the Grevillea imaginings lincout. It is quite a fine design with small parts so is by it’s nature slow & fiddly. I have however been struggling with chronic pain issues & life interfering with art!

It is progressing though & I am now in the final stages of cleaning up all those tine little edges. I am also on a deadline for this work so I need to get moving to printing & painting.

Handy Hint: One thing I have recently discovered, why I did not know nor think about it earlier I don’t know! I have put a small piece of non slip mat under the lino block whilst carving. Previously I have always butted one edge up against the carving board but often find I use my left hand/arm as an alternative for carving round different angles when this does not work. The non stick mat has made this much easier & taken a strain off my arm & shoulder which has made tings a lot easier!

 

Transferring ‘Grevilleas’ Imaginings Design

The current design I am working on is one based around Grevillea rhyolitica – or the Deua Grevillea which is a grevillea endemic to south-eastern NSW. this has long been a favourite Grevillea of mine to photograph especially when visiting the Eurobodalla Botanic Gardens near Batemans Bay NSW. It has beautiful delicate falling red flowers.

In my more recent work I have been pushing my drawings and interest in Australian wildflowers into design/patternwork. Taking my drawings and simplifying and expanding them, I have been playing with various ideas for Grevillea rhyolitca for about 12 months now. In this particular work I am playing with positive & negative spaces and imagining ways to play on the shapes and patterns of the original plant & the photographs I have taken of them over many years.

I am hoping to revive this blog using some of my Instagram posts. In recent busy & more demanding times I have found it hard to keep up with this blog in amongst everything else. But Instagram has been a more immediate media to display my work and inspiration. I also value the platform as a way to connect to others & in particular to other artists & printmakers.

This image shows my template for the linocut which I have traced alongside the new piece of lino which I will transfer the design to using tracing paper. Oh & one of my photographs I have taken as inspiration for this this particular artwork.

Getting back on track

It has been a long while since I posted on this studio diary. This is for many reasons including the ease at which Instagram & Twitter allow you to make quick updates & post images. So if you follow on Instagram or Twitter then you will see I am still working – drawing, designing, photographing & looking for inspiration every day.

I have also been working on small drawings & design works which I have been working up into larger works. I have not been able to carve in recent months due to ongoing issues post wisdom teeth surgery which I am still struggling with including issues with my vision. I have just got some new glasses which will help with that issue – I hope! Ongoing pain & nerve issues may take a bit or lot longer.

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I have had to work in shorter bursts & in smaller & different ways

So lots of ideas, small sketchbooks, small drawings, designs, using my computer to develop larger works. This has meant a new way of thinking & working which I am quite enjoying.

I have also still been caring for family fairly closely for the past 2 years including extended periods of time away from home recently. It means I need to be fairly mobile with my artwork!

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I have plans (and a venue with lots of support) for an exhibition in September 2017 & so I am now working towards a range of work to exhibit & expand my work.

I will be away again for a few weeks but have plenty of work & ideas to take with me!

Before I go I have been attempting a little carving which I haven’t been able to do for nearly 12 months & I realise how much I love this process & carving.

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This piece is one of a set of 6 designs which are large & complex to carve in lino but I am looking forward to the challenge. Still have to figure out a plan to print them – need a much larger press than my little book press. Guess I’ll cross that issue when I get to it!

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New Website – lynetteweir.com

http://lynetteweir.com/

http://lynetteweir.com/

Australian Artist – Linocut Artist – Lynette Weir

Many of my longer term blog readers will remember my old website – soulsong.com.au – I was able to build this website using a brilliant online management system that a friend had developed over 10yrs ago. Back then there was no wordpress or any other website builder you could access to build your own site. This system was ahead of it’s time – a login in system where you could build & manage your own website. Unfortunately it is no longer being updated so I needed to find an alternative. After much searching around looking at what was on offer from the many online management systems, I settled on using wordpress as I really like using this system. I have been using Elegant Themes for the last few years but could not find a way to build a simple easy to navigate system for my website that was similar to my original soulsong one.

I had been meaning to try out the new theme – Divi – for a while. It offers a non code dependent builder (my knowledge of code is extremely limited) & Woo Commerce compatibility. When I looked at it initially it looked complicated.

If you follow me on twitter etc you will know that a couple of months ago I fractured my ankle so have been stuck at home unable to drive or do a lot (could not even do artwork as it meant I needed to have my foot down & it ached). So I decided it was time to bite the bullet I spent several hours viewing youtube videos showing how it all worked. It was well worth spending this time to research how the page builder & modules all work as it made things a lot easier in building my website.

I have pretty much worked it out now but there are still some things I need to finish so obviously I will be tweaking things a little more & some of the images need to be updated.

In the meantime I would be very grateful of you let me know what you think & if there are any problems navigating the website.As a final aside: Please note that I do not get any commissions nor have any links to Elegant Themes – I have always found their support forum very helpful & I love the new Divi Theme they have developed for its flexibility to build the website I have been trying to develop for ages.

ANZAC DAY 2015 – Remembering those in our family who served in WW1 & WW2

Flight Officer E. S Weir RAAF

Flight Officer E. S Weir RAAF

Today in Australia it is ANZAC Day – a time to remember those who died & fought in all wars & conflicts but also a time to reflect on their service.

I cannot imagine having to go to war.

I cannot imagine having one of my son’s go to war.

I find it difficult to understand what leads people to have to conquer & dominate others especially through war. I do not understand those who seek to make others bend to their way of life especially through violence & destruction.

I do understand the need to defend against those who would want to conquer another country & to hurt others.

Within my family & my husband’s family we have had those who went to war to defend those who needed help. I knew most of these men. They were all the loveliest, kindest & humble men – war to them must have been very hard. Few spoke of the horrors, some spoke of the losses of friends, but all spoke of the great lifelong friends they made. The difficulties of facing & participating in war always take a toll. Here is a little of those in our family who served in both WW1 & WW2.

Emanuel Wier was from the small western NSW town of Narrandera. He was my father-in-law’s Uncle, my husband’s Great Uncle. He was just 26 years old when as part of the 20th Australian Infantry Battalion in the Somme region of France he died ‘from his wounds’ on the 12th August, 1916. He is buried in the Heilly Station Cemetery, Mericourt-L’Abbe, Picardie, France He never married, never had children & I cannot imagine the horror of fighting in the trenches. His memory was honoured within his family when my father-in-law was named after his Uncle – Emanuel Weir. There are variations of the spelling of their surnames. I imagine this is because the actual spelling was Wiehr – of German descent. As with members of my family of German descent, they anglicised their names in order to join the armed forces in Australia. Those with German names were not allowed to sign up. Thus some became Weir & others Wier.

Emanuel Frederick Weir - was killed on the Western Front WWI

Emanuel Wier – was killed on the Western Front WWI

Frederick James Shawman was my great great Uncle Fred – a kind, quiet & gentle man who was born in Iluka at the mouth of the Clarence River on the NSW North Coast. His Grandfather was the first pilot at Yamba, Frances Freeburn. His mother Jane was the first white woman born there. Like Emanuel Wier my Uncle Fred had to change his surname to join up to go to war he had been born Frederick James Schaumann. Uncle Fred never married nor had children. I remember visiting & talking with him in the little old timber house with the frangipani trees out front where he lived with his sister & alone in his later years. In his final years he lived in the RSL nursing home ion the Northern Beaches in Sydney closer to where he could visit his younger sister who we called ‘Aunty Biddo’ who lived in Manly. We would travel from the other side of Sydney to take him out & visit Aunty Biddo – two quiet & beautiful souls but with a twinkle of mischief in their eye. He came to stay with us once for a few days & it was then that he talked with my Dad about some of the horrors of his time in the trenches of France. We saw & heard the nightmares. Fred Shawman was part of the 20 Infantry Battalion – 18 to 20 Reinforcements (November 1916 – July 1917) and the trench warfare they endured was horrendous.

Arthur Stanley Gray was my Dad’s Uncle, his mother’s brother & my favourite great Uncle. My Dad was born & lived at Southgate outside Grafton on a farm in a small house. It was here where his Uncle Arthur returned after serving in New Guinea in WWII. Uncle Arthur was part of the ground staff building airfields both in Port Moresby & Milne Bay. He told us that as ground staff they were not allowed to carry rifles & the of the raids the Japanese would make on them. They would have to run to find places to hide from the armed nightly attacks. He suffered from malaria & severe dysentery and although this was recognised within his service his emotional distress was evident. We knew him as ‘bomb happy’ & but when he returned & lived with my Dad’s family it was my Dad who was woken at night with Uncle Arthur’s screaming nightmares. it Dad who would sit on him, holding him down til he could settle. The warfare & bombing had taken it’s toll. I remember every holidays visiting my grandparents in Yamba & of Uncle Arthur as a lovely man with a great sense of humour & fun who loved fishing with my Dad & grandfather. He loved his garden & always grew vegetables but he loved growing Hibiscus & his garden was always kept beautifully. He always made me smile & loved all of us kids. He had a daughter from his first marriage but later married Aunty Ena (nee Walter) who had served in the war as part of the WAAF.

Donald Earl Vidler was my Mum’s first cousin & was a Flight Officer/Pilot in WW2 who was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross โ€“ DFC. He was my second cousin & someone who we would see regularly as he lived in the Sutherland Shire not far from us. My memory of him is of a kind, genuine, caring and honorable man with a keen sense of humour and mischief. He was originally a Spitfire pilot but later transferred to Bomber command where he went on to fly Lancaster bombers. I have been told that was not a usual airforce career progression – once you were in either in fighters or bombers it was not often you transferred between them. He flew with distinction & I have told more of his service previously on this blog – click here to see the original post. The value of his service is highlighted also within the comments within that blog post where people knew Don both here in Australia & when he was in the RAAF in the UK, have added additional information & remembrances of him.

Emanuel Stephen Weir was my father-in-law & he signed up & trained in the RAAF & served in the RAF in the UK in WW2. He was a quiet reserved man with a strong sense of duty. Like the other men I have talked about ‘Manning’ spoke a lot of the friendships he made, a little of his training but rarely of the harder times. He had trained in Canada & entered service in the RAF in the UK late in the war. But the training from all I have read was hard & often treacherous with many dying on the airfields of Canada before they even made it to fight in Europe. We have a lot of his memorabilia from that time & all of our three sons spent a lot of time in his final years with him. Our family – my husband, three sons & my parents all helped care for both Manning & my husband’s mother Judy in the last few years of their lives and it was a privilege to have been able to spend that time with them. They are very proud of what their Grandfather did in serving his country and will never forget him. Two of my son’s a few years ago when on a scholarship trip to the UK, took the time to visit the Wellington Museum at the Unit where Manning had spent some time. They went through all the memorabilia & spoke with one of the fellows there that would have served in the same area as their grandfather. I have written previously a little about Manning’s service – you can find the original blog post by clicking here.