Original Linocut Art Prints – an Explanation
An original print is an original work of art and not to be confused with commercial reproductions which may also be described as limited edition prints.
The process of printmaking has evolved over many years. Today, Giclee a type of digital image, is the choice of most British Artists producing Limited Edition Prints. However, many of us still produce collectable art prints by traditional printing techniques. Traditional printmaking creates limited edition prints with an element of originality rather than producing a photographic reproduction of an existing painting.
Artists choose traditional printmaking not necessarily for its ability to produce multiple copies of ‘affordable art’ but for the unique qualities that each of the printmaking processes lends itself to. Each art print produced is normally produced on paper. The print is not a copy but considered ‘an original’ since it is not a reproduction of a painting or other work of art.
Traditional art prints are created from a single original surface which is called a matrix or a block. Common types of matrices used in printmaking include: plates of metal for engraving or etching; stone for lithography; wood for woodcuts; fabric plates for screen printing and linoleum for linocuts.
After the original prints are conceived and created on the matrix the artist produces and signs a limited number of prints known as ‘an Edition’. The number of individual prints and the size of the edition is indicated by a fraction. For example: 5/50 is print number 5 from a limited edition of 50 prints. In addition some Artists will also create a number of Artists Proofs. These prints are identified by the letters ‘A/P’ rather than an edition number and should be no more than 10% of the limited edition print run. Sue uses either the back of a wooden spoon or printing press for pressure. All her work is printed with good quality printing inks on printing paper which is acid free. Please see Instagram @suecollinsart or her website for more information.