Sunday, 19 June 2011

Exhibition update - the Westonbirt print

The first week of the exhibition has gone reasonably well. The weather gods have been against us (and most of the rest of the country) and there are a couple of roads in the area which are shut. Both things have undoubtedly had an impact. Nailsworth has been quieter than normal, but people have commented about how much easier it is to park than normal, good news for any of you intending to visit. The visitor’s book is filling up nicely and there have been a couple of sales, can’t wish for than that.

This smaller print has gained a lot of interest.

'Westonbirt morning'

It shows a clearing in a local visitor attraction, Westonbirt Arboretum. I did the sketch on a lovely sunny Sunday morning; we had taken a flask of coffe with us and sat on our favourite bench. The shadows were very strong across the shorter grass and the sketch has cried out to become an etching.
Many people in the area have annual membership to this beautiful place full of champion trees and national collections and use it as a place to walk and meet friends. We are members ourselves and our dog loves chasing the scents of squirrels through the trees.
The etching is made from a zinc plate etched with copper sulphate crystals. The trees were drawn in with sugar lift and then I left the plate to open bite, stopped out the trees and shadows to some extent and did a second open bite. My original wax ground was applied over slightly sticky sugar lift which provided an unsecure ground and lots of lovely foul bite – a perfect woodland floor. The background detail was created with a soft ground and textures, - several stopping out stages created a back drop which was not too uniform.
Westonbirt is a magical place, and I can see it featuring in future work.

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