Creative Courses

Linocut Workshop

Whenever I look at art I’m always drawn to prints – mostly screen prints and lino prints, it’s something about the clean lines I think. So I still dream of one day being a proper artist who spends all day printing beautiful prints to sell. I kind of think I will one day, when life is a bit quieter and I have more time. Right now (and it’s partly my own fault) I seem to always be rushing from one thing to another. From lampshades to drawing to sewing and back again, plus I also do some admin and social media work for small companies on the side. It’s all good though as I’m someone who really struggles when I don’t have enough to do. I’m already a little nervous about the winter coming up as without the work in the garden to fill my time I’ll need to fill it with something else. I’m seriously thinking about making a quilt, never done it before and it might be a rewarding thing to do and will keep my hands busy.

Anyway, I was dreaming about being a lino print artist a while ago and decided to find myself a course to go on. I’ve done it before but sometimes a course is just what you need to feel inspired and to build your confidence. I soon came across a course in Oxford, run by Claire Florey-Hitchcox. Have a look here.

I found a few courses but immediately loved Claire’s own work and it was only 30 minutes from home so it kind of felt just right. The course I attended was for printing onto fabric so that one day I might be able to print my own designs to make into lampshades. Another dream of mine! I also thought I might be able to add some machine embroidery but that’s just me running before I can walk as usual…

The day was amazing, I loved it. Claire started by showing us all the different tools and linos available and we had a go at cutting different lines and patterns. I’d never thought of getting tools from the shed and hitting them with a hammer to make marks in the lino!

Then we started our own designs, tracing them onto the lino and cutting out, all under Claire’s guidance and with little extra tips shared along the way. Lunch was spent in the gorgeous garden, surrounded by wildlife and the odd chicken walking past. It was so nice to be away from home and chatting with other creative people in the countryside, I must do something like this again very soon.

Here is my lino cut design of a protea flower:

This was five weeks ago and I have to admit I haven’t done any lino printing since. But I will! I just need to order some more equipment and fabric. It’ll be something else to do in the winter to keep busy. Watch this space, there may be printed gilhoolie lampshades coming soon!

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