Australian Floral Emblems 2014 – a new linocut

I was away in the Southern Highlands and Batemans Bay visiting relatives & taking some on holidays for most of March – it was a lovely break & I even managed to sneak in a bit of art making.

Before I left I managed to complete this new design – Australian Floral Emblems 2014.AUSTRALIAN FLORAL EMBLEMS 2014 WEB SCAN SMALL

It was commissioned as a gift for Lismore City Council’s Sister City – Yamato-Takada – for the Lismore City Council Mayor and General Manager’s visit which is currently underway  and joins the previous purchase by Lismore City Council and Yamato-Takada 50th Anniversary of the first Sister City relationship program in August 2013. My linocut was presented yesterday by Mayor Jenny Dowell of Lismore City Council to Mayor Yoshida of Yamato-Takada Council.

Sister City Gift - Lismore City & Yamato Takada Councils April 2014

Australian Floral Emblems 2014 – a Fine Art Handpainted Linocut by Lynette Weir

This Fine Art Linocut Limited Edition Relief Print takes the Floral Emblems for each State or Territory of Australia and weaves them into a design held together by the Australian Floral Emblem – the Golden Wattle – Acacia pycnantha.

AUSTRALIAN FLORAL EMBLEMS 2014 Small Print File

Victoria – Common Heath – Epacris impressa
Tasmania – Tasmanian Blue Gum – Eucalyptus globulus
Australian Capital Territory – Royal Bluebell – Wahlenbergia gloriosa
South Australia – Sturts Desert Pea – Swainsona formosa
Western Australia – Mangles Kangaroo Paw – Anigosanthos manglesii
Northern Territory – Sturts Desert Rose – Gossypium sturtianum
Queensland – Cooktown Orchid – Dendrobium phalaenopsis
New South Wales – Waratah – Telopia speciosissima

The design begins as an idea in a small sketch, developed with a clear understanding of the structures of the wildflowers.

You can see the tiny thumbnail sketch showing the initial ideas sketch for the planning of this linocut in the top left hand corner of the image below. This little ideas sketch is then worked into drawings grounded in draughtsmanship.

Australian Floral Emblems 2014 Drawing medium SCAN

The work is designed into a linocut/linoblock print in the tradition of fine art relief printmaking creating a template to follow for carving.I photocopy the initial drawing and ink in the black areas which allows me a guide to follow for carving out the white areas. I used to bot do this & found I often made mistakes in the carving which meant re-starting the carving of a whole new lino block! So this way I have a guide, not to say that I don’t vary this as I go – sometimes I will rework areas by drawing on the lino block itself. Some of my long term followers may remember my initial false start of this design a few years ago about the time my shoulder was playing up & making carving difficult. The less said about that the better – let’s just say even with the template mistakes still happen!!

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The image from the template is transferred in reverse to the lino block for carving using carbon paper.

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A view from my srawing/carving/painting board out to the native banksias outside my studio window.

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I use a swivel table set at just the right height, strong lamp, specific reading glasses for close work & very sharp lino tools for the carving the lino block.

Australian Floral Emblems 2014 Linoblock

The completed fully carved linoblock!

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A roller is used to ink up a glass plate and then roll over the lino block to transfer the ink. It is important to get an even thin layer of ink to transfer the image to the paper.

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This is the lino block fully inked & ready to print. The more even & carefully applied the ink is to the block the better quality print you will achieve. Note that the design is carved in mirror reverse so that when it is inked and the paper placed on it fro the print it reverses and comes out the right way!! This is particularly important if you are using type or writing within your printmaking!!!

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The paper is placed on top of the lino block and a felt is placed over that to help distribute the weight of the press evenly & not damage the paper & lino block in the process. I use a small wind down book press which lowers a heavy plate onto the block.

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This is the very first print from the carved lino block. It is instantly gratifying to pull a lovely print the very first time. Sometimes the stars align!! But often they don’t! It may take numerous attempts before you get a good quality even print or edition.

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This is the first ‘working proof print’ that has some imperfections in the printing. I use this to work on the first handpainting.

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I use oil based ink for the printing & watercolours for the handcolouring. It is the old adage of ‘oil repels water’ so the watercolour is mostly contained within the oil printing. Although sometimes there will be the need to come back & remove some of the more opaque colours that may run onto the oil printed sections but it comes off easily without taking off the printed areas.

I have also made a little video which focuses on the handpainting of this linocut this time.

– Australian Floral Emblems 2014

Australian Floral Emblems 2014 – A Fine Art Linocut

Collections – Australian Floral Emblems

Whilst ‘on a roll’ I decided to update the info on this blog about another of my ‘Collections’ – Australian Floral Emblems.

In 2001 I was invited by Sutherland Shire Council Cultural Planning and Events Unit, for their Heritage Festival to produce a collection for exhibition based around the Centenary of Federation. This was the first invitation I received from this unit and came about after my participating as part of Group Exhibition in the Palm House Royal Botanic Gardens Sydney to celebrate the New South Wales State floral emblem – the Waratah – Telopia speciossima, in the ‘STATE OF THE WARATAH’ EXHIBITION – OLYMPICS ARTS FESTIVAL SEPTEMBER 2000 – ROYAL BOTANIC GARDENS, SYDNEY.

Having grown up in the Sutherland Shire it was wonderful to focus on the wildflowers – flora – of this area (and Sydney sandstone) and was a nostalgic link back to my childhood.

The result of this invitation was the exhibition called ‘Florafed’.

 2001 'Florafed' Exhibition - Australian Linocut Artist - Invite Card

The focus of new work for this exhibition was the completion of the series of linocut prints based around the Australian Floral Emblems.

I then expanded the idea of using the central floral emblem surrounded by wildflowers  found that State/Territory – recognising ‘state boundaries’ don’t exist for wildflowers! This took an enormous amount of research and help from experts who I am grateful gave me the time. The result was a set of eight larger pieces known as:

‘Australia: A Nation of Wildflowers’

Below is a closeup of the Nation of Wildflowers – Nation of Wildflowers.

To ’round off’ the collection I produced a celebratory piece – ‘Emblems’.

Australian Wildflower Linocut - Australian Floral Emblems

To add to the ‘Heritage Festival’ element of the exhibition I was commissioned to produce 2 works based on the Sutherland Shire – these now form part of a collection for the Sutherland Shire sister city of Chuo, Tokyo.

They are “Wildflowers – Sutherland Shire”  based around the ‘Gymea Lily’ – Hazelhurst Regional Gallery is in Gymea in the Sutherland Shire and “Kurnell – Endangered Ecology” highlighting the endangered ecological community of flora found at Kurnell (part of he Sutherland Shire and ‘Birthplace of the Nation’) and the idea of an image of a book closing and losing these important flora communities.

Australian Wildflower Linocut - Wildflowers Sutherland

Australian Wildflower Linocut -  Kurnell Wildflowers - Endangered Ecology

To see the collection in full please visit my website – Lynette Weir.

oooppps…Australian Floral Emblems…less one

This is like that game “look what’s different between these two images”. Can you see the difference?

The only problem is that the top one is the ‘finished’ design carved and printed.

The second one is how it should look with ALL the Australian Floral Emblems including the beautiful ACT Royal Bluebells Wahlenbergia gloriosa.

So it is back to the carving board to recarve the whole design with the Bluebells.

Australia Day – Golden Wattle and Wildflowers

Golden Wattle

Golden Wattle

Today – 26th is Australia Day – a public holiday here in Australia and a day to celebrate all things Australian – so today I am celebrating our unique wildflowers with some of my linocut designs.

The Golden Wattle – Acacia pycnantha is the Australian floral emblem.

Below is a design incorporating all the Australian State and territory floral emblems.
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Australia – A Nation of Wildflowers

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Australian Floral Emblems – Drink Coaster – Linocut Design

Australian Floral Emblems

Back in May I was commissioned to design an Australian Floral Emblems drink coaster for the Hanna Group. The coasters have been produced and are now available!!

This is the design – it was to include all the Australian State and Territory floral emblems surrounded by the Australian floral emblem – the golden wattle (Acacia pycnantha).

The concept was that there was no real ‘up’ and so the coaster can be swung around in a circle to reveal each of the emblems.