Centre for Fine Print Research University of the West of England Centre for Fine Print Research
 

Funding awards from the Arts and Humanities Research Board (AHRB) 1999-2005

Screen Printed Colour As  A Theoretical Model For The Development Of Inkjet Technology

funded by: AHRB
project coordinator: carinna parraman
project duration: 01.09.2004 - 31.08.2005

Project details:
The objective of this research project was to develop inkjet technology and related new methods for artists through an historical analysis of screenprinting. Whilst inkjet can print fine detail and near continuous tone photographic quality images, it lacked potential as an artist’s tool. In the 1960s and 70s screenprinting was revolutionary in its method of applying layer upon layer of tints and translucent colour to build a picture. This project undertook a historical and technical analysis of 1960s and 70s screenprints from the Department of Prints and Drawings, Tate Britain in order to contribute to developments in inkjet technology.
 
For artists who mix paint on a palette, they define colour by hue, tint and shade, which are: (hue) pure colour, (tint) a pure colour that is mixed with white and (shade) a pure colour that is mixed with  black. The primaries used in inkjet technology – cyan, magenta, yellow and black – could not reproduced all the colours visible on the computer screen and by looking at a digital image on a monitor it was difficult to accurately predict how it would appear on paper.  This project investigated how a tint or translucent colour can be accurately rendered in inkjet.  How can a suitable method be developed in which colour differences and colour predictions be minimised.  And how issues relating to colour mixing, perception, layering, translucency and opacity addressed through more traditional print processes, such as lithography and screenprinting, can inform printed digital colour.

A critical survey of creative production in relation to the market potential of artists' books

Awarding body: AHRB
Awarded to: Sarah Bodman
Researcher participants: Tom Sowden
Project duration: 30.05. 2004 - 29.06. 2005

Project details:
As there is such a direct interaction between the artist and the viewer / purchaser in the field of artists’ books, much more than any other fine art area, this research project aimed to establish how that relationship influences or affects the creative output of the artist. Comparing the different methods used by artists for distributing their work within this field through a series of case studies of both fledging and established book artists. A Comparison of specific collection criteria in individual museums and institutions to investigate if their selection policies affect the artist’s book market and/or the creative output of individual artists was undertaken.

A survey was undertaken of both exhibitors and purchasers at artist’s book fairs and specialist events in order to establish the existing position of the market audience, investigating any current trends and buying patterns for the creative work. An investigation of contemporary artist’s book production and pricing structures across the field. Many book artists are unsure of the market potential of their work and this is particularly difficult in their situation as they are directly responsible for interacting with any purchaser. Also the creative quality and pricing structures obviously differ between for example larger offset editions and unique hand-made works. General benchmarks have been established as a guide for artists and collectors as a result of this survey.

A digital archive of the nineteenth century Woodburytype and its working practice

Awarding body: AHRB
Awarded to:Stephen Hoskins
Researcher participants:Dr Paul Thrikell, Vikki Hill
Project duration: 01.04.2004 - 30.06.2004

Project details:
An investigation into the photo-mechanical printing process invented by Walter Woodbury in 1865. Outputs include an online archive which contains journal articles taken from contemporary photographic journals describing this process and its potential amateur and commercial use as well as describing further refinements to the process. Also included are detailed descriptions of how the process was carried out at two contemporary commercial studios as well as a photographically illustrated description of how the process can be adapted for use in the digital age.

A digital media archive of international vitreous enamel

Awarding body: AHRB
Awarded to: Elizabeth Turrell
Researcher participants:
Project duration: 1.06.2003 - 31.05.2004

Project details:
This research project was the second stage in establishing a digital archive of international contemporary work in vitreous enamel. Having digitised 1000 images, provided by a wide range of international artists in vitreous enamel, the research project established and tested the necessary descriptive terms to create the 'thesaurus' required to catalogue and construct the archive as a web site.

Traditional stone lithography as a medium for printing photographic and digitally mediated imagery

Awarding body: AHRB
Awarded to:Dr Paul Thrikell
Project duration: 1.05.2003 - 30.04.2004

Project details:
Despite traditional stone lithography's proven track record as a creatively flexible medium for the production of artists' 'original plans' the possibilities for its use as a photomechanical medium within this context have not been fully explored.

This project sought to develop fine art print studio friendly methods for integrating contemporary photographic and digital imaging techniques into the practice of stone lithography, through the adaptation of long discarded 19th Century industrial photomechanical techniques. The research ultimately aimed to contribute to the consolidation of a broader range of print qualities and capabilities available to artists who employ photographic and digital imaging techniques in the production of prints.


What constitutes a reproduction in the 20th century, through the 19th century collotype process? (Part 2)

Awarding body: Arts and Humanities Research Board
Awarded to: Stephen Hoskins
Researcher participants: Dr Paul Thirkell
Project duration: 01.10. 2001 - 31.03.2004

Project details:
This project presented an evaluation through visual and practical research into 19th century photomechanical print processes, in particular the process of collotype. Whilst the contemporary half-tone system is a commercially economical means of printing, the resulting images do not fully attain the same depth of colour or image clarity as those produced by either chemical photography or the screenless photomechanical printing processes in use at the end of the 19th century. The advent of digital technology has made it possible to emulate and improve some of the once difficult pre-press tasks conducted for the production of these early high-quality printing processes. The objective is to make a thorough appraisal of the 19th century collotype process, define its position in the 21st century as a fine art reproduction or an original artwork and whether the collotype can be produced integrating 21st century technology.

An investigation, recording and presentation of photomechanical prints by process

Awarding body: AHRB
Awarded to: Carinna Parraman
Researcher participants:
Project duration: 01.02.2001- 31.01.2002

Project details:
This research project investigated how the development of the photomechanical print process affected the artist’s creative and visual language. It examined if there has been a change in the way prints are made, the decision process of the printmaker, and looked at whether or not the print has been reduced to a series of technical processes rather than a creative activity. The project provided a detailed overview of the development of photomechanical printmaking over the last 40 years and studied the impact of photography in art, including a short historical context of print studios who have made a significant contribution to the development of photomechanical print.

A practical re-appraisal of continuous tone photo-relief printing for ceramics and alternative substrates

Awarding body: AHRB
Awarded to: Stephen Hoskins
Researcher participants:Dr Paul Thrikell, David Huson
Project duration: 1.06.2000 - 31.08.2003

Project details:
This project explored the potential of early photo-mechanical printmaking techniques for the printing for high quality photographic imagery to ceramics and alternative substrates. It aimed to re-establish the practical working methods of photo-relief printing for ceramic through the modification of the Woodburytype process relief matrix, in order to establish the creative potential of the process for the printing of ceramic and alternative substrates; to demonstrate and assess the possible creative potential and advantages of the photo-relief printing through the practical production of a range of visual material; to produce written documentation which contextualises, describes, and validates the practical results of this research.

Fellowship in the Creative and Performing Arts: Print in Enamel

Awarding body: AHRB
Awarded to: Elizabeth Turrell
Researcher participants:
Project duration: 01.01. 2000 - 31.12.2002

Project details:
This fellowship was a practice-led research programme that pursued a sustained personal programme of high quality research into printmaking and enamelling. It culminated in a body of enamel work for exhibition and publication that evolved from an investigation into the nature of print and enamel: its properties, uses, history, methods of manufacture and, most important of all, its potential as a medium for creative practice by visual artists.

Reappraising the creative potential of underglaze ceramic transfer printing in the light of new technology

Awarding body: AHRB
Awarded to: Stephen Hoskins
Researcher participants:
Project duration: 01.03.2000 - 31.08. 2000

Project details:
A pilot study to re-assess the creative potential of early methods of under-glaze ceramic transfer printing for the contemporary practioner combining the use of digital technology and Photopolymer printing (Flexography).

The investigation and the production of an electronic resource to facilitate the dissemination of research in printmaking

Awarding body: AHRB
Awarded to: Carinna Parraman
Researcher participants:
Project duration: 01.12.19 99 - 30.11.2000

Project details:
The CFPR was awarded funding in order to improve its level of dissemination through the production of quality reference material The project enabled the researchers to develop a prototype CD-ROM that may be used to produce a series of multimedia research documents.

An investigation into what constitutes a reproduction in the 20th century, through the 19th century collotype process (Part 1)

Awarding body: Arts and Humanities Research Board
Awarded to:Stephen Hoskins
Researcher participants: Dr Paul Thirkell
Project duration: 01.02.1999 - 30 .04.2000

Project details:
A component of the now completed AHRB collotype research project (What constitutes a reproduction in the 21st Century) was to assimilate and adapt the high quality continuous tone collotype process for use in a fine art print studio environment. The traditional glass plate method of collotype continues to be used as a part of The CFPR Collotype Atelier. This type of plate making involves pre-coating a grained, 8mm glass plate with a substratum layer (silicate and gelatine solution) before applying a main bi-chromated gelatine coating. The coating is dried for around 8 hours in a special low temperature oven producing a hard, light sensitive coating on the printing plate. The plates are exposed to continuous tone negatives using a UV exposure unit. After exposure, plates are soaked in cold water and left to dry prior to printing.

A feasibility survey of the 19th century Woodburytype print process and its potential relationship to 20th century rapid prototyping technology

Awarding body: AHRB
Awarded to: Carinna Parraman
Researcher participants:
Project duration: 01.04.1999 - 31.03.2000

Project details:
A feasibility study for the adaption of a 19th Century print process for 20th Century use. With the advent of digital technology the aesthetic quality of image tone has been reappraised. 20th Century technology has the ability to produce prints quickly and economically but has not managed to surpass the tonal or organic quality of these earlier prints.

Indigenous printmaking - a survey of adaptable technology for printmakers

Awarding body: AHRB
Awarded to: Stephen Hoskins
Researcher participants:
Project duration: 01 June 99 - 31 May 2000

Project details:
A comparative investigation of indigenous printmaking processes and materials in developing countries (Africa and India). This project produced and compiled evidence of differing practices, experiments and tests of different materials in different environments and promoted the use of locally sourced materials suitable for local conditions. The materials identified allowed artists, without the necessity of importing prohibitively expensive specialist art materials and lack of access to print workshops, to produce professional quality prints.

An Investigation into 15th Century Chiaroscuro Woodcuts and their Influence on Contemporary Tonal Woodblock Printing

Awarding body: AHRB
Awarded to: Richard Anderton
Researcher participants: Carinna Parraman
Project duration: 01.12.1999 - 30.11. 2000

Project details:
This research project reinvestigated a period of German Renaissance chiaroscuro woodcut printing and its influence on a contemporary industrial process, Helio relief printing, for general multi-block colour-relief woodcut images. Artists and their printers in the 15th Century investigated the use of multi-block woodblock printing to obtain a tonal quality through colour to depict light and dark, otherwise known as chiaroscuro. The production of a particular type of print, by the 15th Century artists, was confined to a short time span of only ten years. However the quality of prints produced during this time, in particular, the use of woodblocks to achieve a depth of field through colour and its potential impact on contemporary colour printing methods. This project resulted in a historical survey of prints produced in Germany in the 15th Century, an analysis of prints produced during this time including engraving, colour analysis and registration, and an investigation of the use of helio relief as a means of acquiring an in-depth understanding of how the 15th Century prints were made.

The artist's book in 'Process' - a critical analysis on the making of an artist's book

Awarding body: AHRB
Awarded to: Stephen Hoskins
Researcher participants: Jonathan Ward
Project duration: 01.09.1999 - 31.08.2000

Project details:
This project established a visual and literary analysis of the motives behind recent artist book practice and production. A comparison of the process of the production of the book by fine artists as occasional or eclectic book maker, the designer employing the book form in their work and the book artist/publisher, who has chosen the discipline of book making as a career. This project aimed to distinguish the specific act of making as opposed to the artist’s book as artefact, which is a product of the making.

A critical survey of British artists' books 1989-1999

Awarding body: AHRB
Awarded to: Carinna Parraman
Researcher participants: Sarah Bodman
Project duration: 01.02.1999 - 31.05.1999

Project details:
This project was a visual and critical survey of contemporary artists’ books produced in Britain in the last decade.

Dissemination

Publications

IMPACT Conferences, Events and Symposia

Digital Archives

Workshops and Masterclasses


Exhibitions

Funding Awards


2.5 D Vector Driven Printing

Funding Organisations

Hewlett Packard (HP)
www.hp.com/uk

Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTP)
www.ktponline.org.uk


Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC)
www.ahrc.ac.uk

EU Marie Curie Actions
www.ukro.ac.uk/mariecurie

Research Councils UK (RCUK)
www.rcuk.ac.uk

Newby Trust
www.newby-trust.org.uk/