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Hi I’m Jess, I’m the designer and printmaker at Ink & Brayer where I create limited edition linocut prints.
Ink & Brayer prints are made using high quality inks and papers and each picture in an edition is carefully hand-printed, signed and numbered, so there are little variations and no two are exactly the same - you’ll be owning or gifting a totally unique original.
My inspiration comes mainly from the natural world here on Earth, but I also like to feature fantastical things from further afield into space, as I’m fascinated by science fiction.
All the prints at Ink & Brayer start out as my sketches, which I work on to identify areas of contrast, texture, or colour that will work well in a print, before carving the design into a lino block with special tools. I love seeing the ideas in my head gradually come to life as I carve out the lino. Peeling the paper back from the block to reveal the first print of an edition never loses its excitement.
ABOUT MY Linocut PROCESS
All my prints are based on my original sketches and I love seeing the ideas I have in my head come to life, layer by layer. I work on my sketches to identify areas of contrast, texture, or colour that will work well in a print, before transferring the design to a lino block and carving it with special gouging tools. Peeling the paper back from the block to reveal the first print of an edition never loses its excitement.
When carving a linocut, you cut out areas that you don't want to show and leave the areas that you do, incorporating texture and pattern. Particularly detailed areas, like feathers and fur, can take days to carve out, but it's a relaxing process.
I print completely by hand and use high quality artists inks to ensure your prints have vibrant lightfast colours. The inks are mixed on a perspex square and then rolled onto the lino block with an ink roller (brayer). A sheet of paper is then lined up carefully and placed on top, and I gently but firmly rub the paper onto the lino to transfer the image onto the paper. This process is repeated for every colour in a print, as each colour has to be carved out of a separate lino block and carefully lined up with the layer before, with drying time in between.
Finished prints are hung up on a drying line, with each one clipped onto the line with a tiny clothes peg. I find the tiny clothes pegs really adorable so this part always makes me happy. When they're dry (which can take a very long time with oil based inks!) I examine each print to check quality and those that pass the test are signed and numbered.