Gelli Plate Experiment

Gelli Plate Experiment

The butterflies and dragonfly are gorgeous with their lacy wings and delicate shapes. Lots of new techniques springing up on the gallery, which is lovely as it does challenge us all to try new things and see art in different way.

Truly lovely Christine and this technique certainly suits your style! You found a Gelli plate really fast!

Thank you Thea and Satu, what an experimental few days we've had! I've just started crocheting a granny square blanket too, another experiment for me! Satu, I bought the Gelli plate a few months ago but after a few initial attempts with it I wasn't that impressed. Seok's description of her method spurred me on to have another go. I think I will have to get some printer's ink though, the acrylic is so messy and hard to remove from the plate.

Christine, I&#39;m just getting the hang of Dendritic now you&#39;ve thrown in another challenge! What on earth is a Gelli plate??<br />This is great, very unusual.

Very clever work, not a clue what these Gelli plates are Christine.

Very strong work Christine superb piece

I&#39;m really surprised to get such positive comments on this, I almost binned it but hoped that Seok might see it and give me some good advice on how to do better! Google Gelli Plate, it is exactly what it say, a printing plate made of a silicone type material that you can ink and use to produce monoprints. They are quite expensive to buy and I thought I&#39;d wasted my money as I couldn&#39;t get on with it and abandoned it. Seeing Seok&#39;s prints using a home made gelletin plate inspired me to try again.

Works well for me - must look into it.

This is lovely Christine - I had been thinking I must get my Gelli plate out again! I clean my plate with cheap baby wipes (Lidl sell 80 for less than &#163;1) and find that with a firm rub they will remove even dried on acrylic. Also to give myself a little more working time, I use Daler Rowney slow drying gel mixed with the acrylic paint - so it doesn&#39;t dry to quickly on the plate. Hobbling around on one crutch now!

Hi Christine, this is a very credible first attempt and has lovely shapes! You have a very good feel for managing positive and negative spaces. <br /><br />If you don&#39;t mind a small comment, perhaps you may want to consider adding a couple more layers in different colors to reduce the amount of white on your print. It&#39;s helpful to use transparent colors and to avoid complementary colors so they don&#39;t turn to mud. I think all you need to do is use a couple of different colors (other than the complementary orange) and use the same leaves in different positions to see what you&#39;ll get out of it. It&#39;s always a surprise, sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn&#39;t. Have you seen the Gelli arts site? They have loads of ideas on how to use the plate. Go to their site: Then click on the Blog tab at the top. On the bottom right of the Blog page, you&#39;ll see the Blog Archive. There&#39;re loads of videos there. I found them helpful, and it helped me to get some ideas, but I found learning some basics and practising loads helped. Sometimes you need to ruin a few prints to get an idea of what you want to do and to correct the mistakes made with previous prints. Linda Germain also has some videos on her website: I found them inspiring, but I admit to not getting as much out of them as I did on her course. But I just noticed - she has posted her recipe on how to make the gelatin plate. You have to join her mailing list to get it, I think. Finally, if you search on YouTube for Andy Skinner and Gelli, you will see a couple of his videos using the Gelli Plate. That&#39;s how I started. They&#39;re not sufficient to get you up and running, but they were instrumental in getting me started. <br /><br />As for cleaning, I am so not a packrat, so I really hate the mess of printmaking. And I hate the fact that I have to keep so many stencils and found objects with potential for stamping and they&#39;re always dirty. They are littered all over the room by the time I&#39;m finished and the paint or ink is everywhere! It helps to have a basin with water and a rag to clean the brayer, a spray bottle and some paper towels to spritz and wipe everything that stains the table or the floor immediately before they dry. I&#39;m not sure if you can get Golden Open paints where you are, but they&#39;re slow drying acrylics and I used them for my Gelli Plate. It doesn&#39;t dry for a couple of days if you use it for painting, but because it is used in thin layers on the Gelli Plate, it normally dries on the paper in less than an hour. You have to wait for the paint to dry after each layer, though, before adding additional layers, or it may get muddy. As Julie suggested, you could also use a slow drying retarder mixed with your existing quick drying acrylics to slow down the drying time. As for cleaning the plate, I ran through loads of baby wipes and hand sanitizers, but those are the most effective. And to get the plate really clean, apply baby oil after the plate has been cleaned with baby wipes. <br /><br />So much for my one little comment! Anyway, I hope you&#39;ll find all that stuff useful. Don&#39;t give up! I have a stack of ruined prints higher than the ceiling! If the prints don&#39;t turn out, you can roll some white acrylic paint or gesso on top of the ruined paint and start again, though it will not give you the original brilliant white of your paper but sometimes it does give an unexpected and lovely surprise.

Posted by SY Chew on Mon 17 Aug 13:36:18

Oh, and one other thing - if you decide to go for watersoluble printing ink, the one disadvantage I find is they don&#39;t have as good a range of colors as acrylics, so I am basically working with a very limited palette - yellow, red, blue and black. I didn&#39;t find their green, pink or white very appealing. Golden Open, however, has a great range of colors, which I do miss now I&#39;m using printing ink. I may return to acrylics again once I feel up to experimenting further.

Posted by SY Chew on Mon 17 Aug 14:04:41

This is beautiful, Christine, both the design and colours. What surface is it printed on - very textured look to it.

Thank you Michael, Julie, Seok and Jenny. Julie, I&#39;d forgotten about the baby wipes so thanks for that tip. Jenny, I used Khadi paper for the print. Seok, thank you so much for taking the trouble to write such a long detailed explanation. I have now binned the original print I&#39;m afraid, I wasn&#39;t very impressed with it. I wish I hadn&#39;t as you&#39;ve explained how I could possibly have improved it. Like you I really hate the mess of it all, I&#39;m not a tidy worker and create mayhem! I will look at the sites you suggested and will have another go when I feel I can face the messiness again. I can get Golden Open Acrylics and have been using their Fluid Acrylics, for the Gelli Plate and the Dentrictic Art, they are quite expensive though and I&#39;ve wasted so much! I won&#39;t give up and I won&#39;t bin my failures either!

This is lovely Christine, I like the dark blue against the lighter colours and the butterfly and dragon fly stencils.

This would make a nice card Christine! Very interesting! I look forward to seeing your next experiments.

Hi Christine, I just wanted to tell you to hold off buying the printing ink until you decide on whether you want to try printing on the Gelatin plate (as opposed to the Gelli Plate). I tried the printing ink on my Gelli plate today (because my Gelatiin plate melted in our heat, with our airconditioner having been turned off for repairs!). The inks didn&#39;t work very well with the Gelli plate and I had difficulty rolling the ink onto the Gelli plate because the plate seemed to repulse the ink. In addition, it was virtually impossible to get a good ghost print with the printing inks on the Gelli plate. I then tried using the Golden Open with my techniques that I acquired with Linda Germain and found the Golden Open worked very well with the Gelli Plate. However, there needs to be some adjustment to the techniques. I am still trying to figure out the details, but just wanted to give you a heads up so you don&#39;t run off to buy the inks. I must admit that now that I am used to painting with the Gelatin plate, I prefer it to the Gelli plate, so I may have wasted my money on my Gelli purchase as well!

Posted by SY Chew on Wed 19 Aug 11:11:50
Hang on Studio Wall

Inspired by Seok's monoprints, a first attempt at Gelli plate printing. More practise needed I think!

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Christine Davies

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