Tuesday, 17 March 2009

Gelatin Print

Working today on a gelatin print I made a couple of months ago. I used powdered animal gelatin to make this and want to experiment with the vegetarian brand to see if there is any difference in the setting properties. I have been using GIMP to change colour and testing some of the filters - this is very slightly manipulated using IWARP. I like the fluid quality of gelatin printing. It is very gentle and floaty. You need a fairly solid gel and water-based printing inks. (I will get around to putting some techniques on the site asap - if anyone needs any information before then give me a shout).
Lunch and then some painting.


marja-leena said...

Jacky, I like this print. I'm not familiar with gelatin prints but it sounds almost like a collagraph using medium. How does using GIMP relate to the gelatin print, do you first your test colours with it?

This Artist's Place said...

This image was made by placing rubber bands, hair and leaves on the inked up surface of the jelly. Paper positioned over that and very gently smooth hand over. Don't press hard or your items will cut into the jelly. This gives you a negative image (you can use as background for another print later). Carefully remove items from jelly and position clean sheet of paper on jelly to make positive print. Again gently smooth hand over back of paper and pull. You can repeat the process until the 'plate' starts to break up.

The print here is in fact from a broken piece of jelly. I can usually get about 3-4 hours from one mold (tend to use an old tin tray about 1 inch deep).

The logo on my website is a gelatin print.

I have scanned the image and altered the colour from the original ultramarine ink and used the iwarp filter(I think this is similar to liquify in Adobe),to shift small areas and soften the lower edge.

The gelatin is Dr Oetker - 6 sachets mixed into 240ml of cold water and then 240ml boiling water added slowly - pour into container, skim any scum and air bubbles with a strip of old newspaper and set in fridge overnight.

I will then experiment with transfer back to different paper - am trying some other images printed onto T shirt transfer and then onto Japanese papers and wood, both work quite well.

I suppose they are emerge as surface transfer monoprints!

marja-leena said...

Thanks for the excellent explanation, Jacky! So, you don't need a press for this? Great to do at home!

This Artist's Place said...

No press. I really can't remember where I first saw it and only found a couple of examples on Youtube but they would be worth looking at for anybody interested in printing so easily without a press.

Warning: the first couple of prints tend to be a bit watery, so treat the gelatin plate very gently. I usually make up a couple of tins so that I have plenty to work with.

aine scannell said...

Hello Jacky

here I am browsing through your blog and enjoying it and lo and behold you have been doing gelatin monoprints of late. I bought a pack of Dr Oetkers, a couple of weeks ago and look forward to trying it out. I was surprised to see that you needed to use all of the six sachets to create your gelatin mould. Thats really helpful to know. One thing I wonder about is whether one should use medium weight eg 180 gsm printmaking paper or heavy weights such as eg 330 gsm ( not hat I have much if any of this - too expensive)
I do like that gelatin image that you played around with using the computer. Did you do anything more with the image or is it left as it is. I have a blog about artists using inkjet prints combined with traditional printmaking techniques. I have not yet come across anyone combining digital / inkjet with gelatin. I intend to do this myself.

anyway better go make lunch now
starting to hear those springy noises in my tummy.


This Artist's Place said...

Hi Aine,

Sorry not to have replied sooner - away all week. Thanks for your comments.

Really strange checking emails and finding your comment about gelatin prints. I had not done any for a while and am about to start some new experimental work with them! Also coincidentally, waiting for a delivery of Golden medium for lifting inkjet prints (was struggling with this before my holiday!) - sounds like we are exploring the same areas and trying for combinations!

I have been looking for other ways to use the gelatin - I was making it in an old shallow tin but now use a clay surround on plexi-glass to hold the gelatin until it sets and then remove the clay collar - that way I can make any size plate I want. The plexi-glass also helps with registration.

I haven't used that particular gelatin print further at the moment but have a folder full of odds and ends that I usually recycle into something else in a layered way later on and I find digital a really geat way to move all kinds of work around into something new and usually more interesting.

The inks used are water-based and I have used cartridge paper - so its quite cost-effective - especially at the play stage!

I have a few ideas I want to explore this week when I get my act together, so will post as soon as I have some new images. I've had a couple of emails about this so it might be helpful for people and focus my mind on getting down to work!

So far I have only been able to find very basic information about gelatin printmaking but I do feel it is worth looking at - think you either love its fluidity or hate it as difficult to control!

Downside - I would like to find some way to make the plates last longer before cracks start to appear in the surface. (Make a couple of plates at a time!)

Hope this helps. Going to check out your site to see if you've got any info about inkjet prints...