Tuesday, December 22, 2009
Printsy Interview - Kim Raymont
I studied art at school, and after leaving began a combined Fine Art & French degree at university. However I left after a term to return to college for further arts study. I then began working, but continued my arts studies with evening photography courses. In 2002, I had my first child and began an Open University degree when she was a baby. I now have four children- a 7 year old, a 4 year old and 2 year old twins, and felt the creative urge again.... so began my business, Something Wonderful Design.
How did you get started in printmaking?
Apparently I was mad on making potato prints as a toddler, if that counts.... If not, I studied print as part of the art courses I took at school and college, and loved it.
Describe where you work.
At home, in a very small space! Once the children are in bed I take over the dining table... then before long I have usually spread out and covered the bookshelves, cupboards and even the piano with wet prints! I sketch out ideas wherever I am in a small notepad, and love to cut my lino blocks outside on a sunny day.
What's your favourite printmaking process?
I absolutely love screen printing, but don't currently have the space or funds to do this from home.... I really adore lino printing, and also monoprinting.
What's your creative process for any given print? (eg. sketch first? Pre-planned or free-form?)
It all starts with an idea in my head, which can be triggered by anything... signs on the street, the colour of the sky, patterns on fabric, clothing, film, music, art... I then sketch out a design in my notepad, and draw a few drafts out before transferring it, not forgetting to reverse the design, onto a lino block.
What do you enjoy most about printmaking?
The moment of truth.... peeling up the paper just a chink from the inked up lino block, to see the very first print from a new design!!!
What's your least favorite part of the process?
Washing all the ink off everything.
What are your inspirations (other artists, people, places, events, etc.)?
I love Japanese woodcuts by artists like Hokusai; Hockney, Warhol and Hopper (amount many others) for artists, Brandt's photography.... it has to be St Ives in Cornwall (UK) for my most inspirational place, but to be honest I am inspired by so many things (see my answer for creative processes!) I could be anywhere! I love visiting art galleries, but there is also an amazing array of local talent, not to mention some stunning pieces of work on Etsy.
How has your work changed and evolved since you started?
I started making very graphic, simple linoprints, and fairly soon after that began printing onto different background (such as sheet music, wallpaper and wrapping paper), which in turn inspired me to make my prints more decorative and intricate. I also started printing onto canvas, and using a new material informs the design style itself, as well as the colours I use. One thing leads to another!
How do you get past creative slumps?
The great thing about printmaking is there is so much to do! Designing a print, cutting it out, printing it, framing or mounting the work... research (including going to exhibitions, looking at books, browsing the Internet).... plus the whole sales side of approaching potential shops, arranging stalls at craft fairs... working on advertising online and elsewhere... so basically if I get stuck or fed up of one side of my work, there are a million other useful things to do!!!!
How do you promote your work?
A mixture of selling as much as possible, which is great advertising! and more formal advertising on the Internet. I hand business cards out; give my cards and prints away as personal gifts whenever anyone has a birthday. I think its very important to have an online presence as people expect you to have a website- it is much more professional. As well as my own website, which I set up myself for free, I have my etsy shop and a page on Facebook. I also have my business name as my screen name on Flickr, Twitter etc, for extra advertising.
Any other comments or advice for others who want to try making hand-pulled prints?
Give it a go! Its great fun, and really doesn't require specialist equipment. You can do monoprinting for instance, with any paint and flat surface.