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

Professor Carinna Parraman

Past Research

Grant title: The use of printable UV, thermo and solar receptive pigments for wallpaper and textiles

Awarding body: UWE/SouthWest Regional Development Agency Knowledge Fellowship
Awarded to: Dr Carinna Parraman
industrial partner: Roland DG
Project duration: 2010-11

Project details:

Dr Carinna Parraman was awarded funding from UWE and the SouthWest Regional Development Agency to develop a range of printed materials and surfaces that can be developed as textiles or applied to walls that will adapt to the changes in the environment, such as light, emotion and temperature.

The project will combine both craft, design and cutting edge fabrication and printing technologies. New printing technologies can be used to print onto a new range of materials (plastics, metal, wood, uncoated papers) and trialling new inks and methods of printing (UV hardening, metallics, ceramic, 3D, non standard colour).

The long-term vision of this project was to address how we currently design, think and construct the materials in our environment; to operate a human-centred approach to the development of ITC technologies, which allows us to imagine, design and create materials, surfaces, textures in a way that benefits human wellbeing and to design tools and materials to enhance our environment. These materials will demonstrate a physical change in surface characteristics such as a change in colour, change in shape, store energy for later use, or reflect light.

Roland DG (Clevedon) have provided funding in-kind to this project through state of the art equipment and technical back up. This project resulted in outputs examining:

- Print on demand approach to interior design including the design of templates for users to develop own wallpaper projects

- Printable multi-geonomic/textured surfaces that respond to and enhance low light conditions, that adapts to and enhances available lighting

- UV hardening inks that can be printed onto many different surfaces and therefore reduces the costs of pre-fabrication and coatings that are currently in use for inkjet materials

- Use of colour in the built environment

KTP between Renishaw Plc and the CFPR at UWE

awarding body: Technology strategy board and AHRC
awarded to:
Carinna Parraman and Stephen Hoskins
researcher participants:
Chris Bytheway
project duration:
2011 - 2014

Project details:

This successful project, led by Dr Carinna Parraman and Professor Stephen Hoskins, aimed to enhance the Additive Layer Manufacturing capability of Renishaw, improving in-house utilisation and developing innovative new machines and processes, through embedding print related technology and arts expertise, and is funded jointly between the Technology Strategy Board and the Arts and Humanities Research Council.

Renishaw is a global company with core skills in measurement, motion control, spectroscopy and precision machining. It develops innovative products that significantly advance  customers’ operational performance  by, for example, improving manufacturing efficiencies, raising product quality, maximising research capabilities and improving the efficacy of medical procedures.  The company carries out its research and development and manufactures primarily in the UK.  It sells its products both in the UK and overseas for use in applications as diverse as machine tool automation, co-ordinate measurement, Raman spectroscopy, machine calibration, position feedback, CAD/CAM dentistry, stereotactic neurosurgery and medical diagnostics.  Chris Bytheway now has a full time position at Renishaw.

The Development of Novel Inkjet Inks

Awarding body: Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC)
Awarded to: Parraman, Carinna
Researcher participants: O’Dowd, Paul
INDUSTRIAL partnerS: Pulse Roll Label Products Ltd-
Project duration: 31/07/2014 – 31/07/2015
Project details:
In 2004, Dr Carinna Parraman undertook an AHRC funded project entitled "Screenprinted colour as a theoretical model for the development of inkjet technology". The Development of Novel Inkjet Inks seeks to build upon and extend the methods developed working in collaboration with Pulse Roll Label Products Ltd., a specialist manufacturer of inks and varnishes for the label printing and the packaging industries.
The collaboration will use the results of the 2004 research by exploiting recent developments in inkjet technology to enable Pulse to develop innovative UV cure ink products for commercial print applications, thus giving them an advantage in the field. Today, the field of colour printing is becoming increasingly more technical and remote from traditional methods of the application of colour in the physical world. The way an artist mixes and applies colour is fundamentally different to the digital reproduction of colour and coloured images. An artist's approach to colour printing is concerned with the physical mixing of pigments that are then applied as layers of colour, whereas the digital reproduction of colour is reliant on computational colour modelling to provide accurate numerical data for reproduction. Artists using digital colour are now becoming cognisant in an increasingly technical environment that demands more understanding of different colour spaces, characterisation of printer hardware and paper and an array of file formats.


The previous research by Parraman demonstrated that a more practical knowledge and perceptual understanding of colour can be formulated from the perspective of traditional methods by physically mixing colour pigments and over layering colour. In 2004, the technological capabilities and colour science were not ready for exploitation, in part because of limitations in the capability of inkjet print heads. Inkjet printing technology and knowledge has matured, and recent improvements in print head technology and software have increased the potential to inkjet print a wider range of inks onto a wider variety of materials. The previous research will now allow the use of a range of colorants that expand the current process colour set (bespoke colour palettes that match artists colours) spot colours (Pantone) pigments and decorative inks (metallic, mica, gloss) and novel colorants (fluorescent and colour changing) onto materials including leather, wallpaper, metallic card, plastic.
As demonstrated at industrial print expos, the shift from the traditional screenprint and lithography market to high-speed inkjet printing is partially due to developments in UV curable inks, which have better adhesion to a range of materials, resulting in a diversity of novel print applications, including: decorative printing for packaging, textiles and labelling. This development in UV curing creates greater potential for layering in relation to the findings of the 2004 research. Additionally it creates further potential for commercial exploitation for printer and ink manufacturers to develop UV curing inks.
Pulse wish to address colour printing from the perspective of traditional over layering of colour to create secondary colour effects. This project will move beyond halftoning and process colours - CMYK (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black) towards the development of custom pigments and decorative inks to obtain new colour mixtures. The results should lead to new methods for printing from a practitioner perspective aligned more closely to the creative arts and creative industries.

Colour Printing 7.0

project manager: Carinna Parraman
project duration: 2012-2015


Project description: 
Dr Carinna Parraman is leading this project at UWE in the field of colour printing which will provide a multidisciplinary and practical understanding on colour, paper optic, ink paper interaction and use of multispectral colour reproduction techniques to reproduce colour on displays, paper substrate (using n-colorant printers). The network will utilise the relevant skills provided by experts within the field to bring theory, analysis and practise together in the training events.

The project aims are:
Increase and enhance multispectral colour reproduction technologies and methodologies
Establish a robust network (between the proposed network partners) for multispectral colour processing and reproduction and spectral colour workflow.
Attract competent young researchers to the field of colour and multispectral colour reproduction
Network with current and new partners to sustain further activity in the field, for example through new projects financed by industry and/or the EU

The project, will strengthen and increase the competence of the young researchers and the network partners in the research field of colour image science, in particular, methods which take into account spectral aspects of digital media and colour imaging system.
You can find out more about the project at: http://cp70.org/

CREATE - Colour Research for European Advanced Technology Employment

Awarding body: European Union, Framework 6. Marie Curie Conferences & Training Courses (SCF)
Awarded to: Dr Carinna Parraman, Lead scientist and Coordinator
Researcher participants: Alison Davis
Project duration: 2007-2010
Project urls: http://www.create.uwe.ac.uk / http://www.uwe.ac.uk/sca/research/create

Project details:

Through substantial European Union Framework 6 Marie Curie funding, CREATE - Colour Research for European Advanced Technology Employment: a pan-European network of research projects brought together European 8 colour groups to exchange and disseminate knowledge through a programme of specialist events (2007-2010). The project responded to Sir George Cox’s HM treasury report 2005; and addressed the Lisbon Summit agenda 2000. Partners were: Universita Degli Studi Di Milano, Italy; Gjovik University College, Norway; University of Leeds; University of Ulster at Belfast; Universidad Autonoma de Madrid, Spain; Universite de Reims Champagne-Ardenne, France; Pannon University, Hungary.

Carinna has edited and is the author of three chapters of major book surveying research from the CREATE project: Colour Coded. This 300 word publication, published by the Society of Dyers and Colourists (SDC) is a collection of the best papers from the 4-year European project that has considered colour from the perspective of both the arts and sciences.

The research crossovers between the fields of art, science and technology was also a subject that was initiated through Bristol’s Festival if Ideas events in May 2009. Carinna coordinated and chaired the event during which the C.P Snow lecture “On Two Cultures’ (1959) was re-presented by Actor Simon Cook and then a lecture made by Raymond Tallis on the notion of the Polymath.

The CREATE project had a worldwide impact for researchers, academics and scientists. Between January and October 2009, the site received 221, 414 visits. The main groups of visitors originate in the UK (including Northern Ireland), Italy, France, Finland, Norway, Hungary, USA, Finland and Spain. A basic percentage breakdown of the traffic over ten months indicates: USA -15%; UK - 16%; Italy - 13%; France -12%; Hungary - 10%; Spain - 6%; Finland - 9%; Norway - 5%. The remaining approximate 14% of visitors are from other countries including Belgium, The Netherlands and Germany (approx 3%). A discussion group has been initiated by the author as part of the CREATE project to facilitate an ongoing dialogue between artists and scientists.

related outcomes:
C. Parraman, 'Colour Coded', Edited book, Society of Dyers and Colourists, September 2011.

C. Parraman, Specifying Colour and Maintaining Colour Accuracy for 3D Printing, CREATE Conference, Gjøvik University College, Norway. June 2010 (.pdf)

C. Parraman, The longevity of ink on paper for fine art prints. CREATE, Colour Heritage and Conservation Università Degli Studi Di Milano, Italy, 19 - 24 October 2009 (.pdf)

C. Parraman, A. Rizzi: 'Developing the CREATE network in Europe', Colour in Art, Design and Nature, Edinburgh, October 24th 2008.

P. Walters, D. Huson & C. Parraman, '3D Printing and Colour: A Multidisciplinary Investigation',
CREATE (Training event 2), UWE, Bristol, 13th-17th October 2008.

C. Parraman, 'A report on the CREATE Italian event: Colour in cultural heritage'

C. Parraman, “Mixing and describing colour”. CREATE (Training event 1), France, 2008.

Hewlett-Packard (HP) Partnership

funding body: HP Art and Science Philanthropy Fund
awarded to: Prof. Stephen Hoskins & Dr Carinna Parraman
dates: 2000 - Present
funding body: Full details of Carinna's work with HP

Project details:

The Centre for Fine Print Research (CFPR) initially established links with Hewlett Packard (HP) in 2000 through the HP Art and Science Philanthropy fund, which was set up to promote collaboration between arts based research organisations, science research and HP. The purpose of the fund was to ensure that these links could be strengthened, not only through access to equipment, but also by providing technical support in the form of detailed information on ink, head array mechanics and software and firmware within the printer. Over an unprecedented five-year life the project brought together major art museums and galleries, schools of art and design, universities and secondary schools to explore how information technology could be used in support of art; its creation, preservation and communication. As such some long standing flagship relationships were built with and between institutions including the National Gallery London, the Louvre Paris and the Uffizi, the CFPR, Southampton University and other key European universities involved in the science of art. Many of these relationships formed the basis for further pan-European collaborative formations, and also seeded a series of Large Format Printing and Colour master classes, ‘The Perpetual Portfolio’, led by the CFPR.

View full details of Carinna's work with HP.

Screenprinted Colour as a Theoretical Model for the Development of Inkjet Technology

Awarding body: AHRC
Awarded to: Carinna Parraman
Project duration: September 2004 - August 2005

Project details:

This research project examined the relationship between traditional colour mixing (as used by British artists interested in 'colour field' painting during the 60s and 70s) and digital colour. Drawing on access to the Tate Print collection, Carinna investigated how screenprinted colourants and surface tactile qualities can be used as a model for inkjet technologies asked how colour rendition in inkjet technologies might be improved for the artist who wishes to use technologies beyond photographic reproduction. Her work in this area of colour resulted in a collaboration with Hewlett Packard Laboratories, San Diego, USA on new methods for inkjet printing for artists.

Methodologies for the integration of fine art practice and wide format digital printing

Awarding body: AHRC
Awarded to:Stephen Hoskins
Researcher participants: Carinna Parraman, Paul Laidler
Project duration: October 2003 - March 2007

Project details:

For the fine artist, wide format digital printing promises new potential for the creation of print based artwork. However, although some common ground exists between the industry led function of this technology and aesthetic concerns of the printmaker, to date little has been done to define how it may be effectively employed to incorporate qualities which have become unique to the domain of fine art print. This project sought to quantify existing methods of processing digital images and develop imaging and colour systems which may assist in broadening the current scope of digitally based printing from a fine art perspective.

Knowledge Transfer Partnership between John Purcell Paper and CFPR

awarding body: Technology Strategy Board
awarded to: Prof. Stephen Hoskins & Dr Carinna Parraman
Researcher participants: Hong Qiang Wang
Project duration: 2001-2003

Project details:
Carinna initiated a two year project in December 2001, in collaboration with John Purcell Paper, to investigate and develop paper profiles for artist's fine art printmaking papers. John Purcell is the major paper distributor for artists in the UK and supplies a vast range of artist's and conservation papers. The rapid development of desktop inkjet printing and subsequent use by artists as an alternative method for printing digital images has highlighted that there is a shortfall in quality inkjet papers. The objective was to create a series of standard and bespoke colour profiles for digital printing to meet the requirements of the digital market.
Hong Qiang Wang was employed as research associate to investigate artists coated and uncoated papers for inkjet printing. He developed a series of colour profiles and colour management methods to optimise printer and paper combinations. Carinna Parraman was Academic Supervisor at the CFPR, and Jeremy Youngs was the Industrial Supervisor.

An investigation, recording and presentation of photomechanical prints by process

funding body:AHRB
awarded to: Prof. Stephen Hoskins & Dr Carinna Parraman
dates: 2001-2002

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 hds been a change in the way prints are made, the decision process of the printmaker, and looked at whether or not the print hds 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.

outcomes: 20 20
The objective of this investigation and exhibition was an enquiry into the artist’s working practice, including all the elements that contribute to the making of a print. 20 artists were asked to answer a lengthy questionnaire on their work, ideas and methods of working. The artists’ responses were varied and revealing. Resulting work was exhibited, with responses to the questionnaire exhibited alongside the prints.

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

Awarding body: AHRC
Awarded to: Richard Anderton
Researcher participants: Carinna Parraman
Project duration: 1999 - 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.

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

Awarding body: AHRC
Awarded to: Prof. Stephen Hoskins & Carinna Parraman
Project duration: 1999 - 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.

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

Awarding body: AHRC
Awarded to: Carinna Parraman
Project duration: 1999 - 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.

related outcomes:
TATE Print Collection Archive - a database that records the modern TATE collection by process, as part of the TATE Library and Archive collection.

A critical survey of British artists' books 1989-1999

Awarding body: AHRC
Awarded to: Carinna Parraman
Researcher participants: Sarah Bodman
Project duration: 1999

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