1. Generally I would start by taking a sheet of Marmoleum (Lino), then either drawing from the mind strait onto the material or drawing from a sketch I would mark out the lines where I will carve using pencil or chalk, I find pencil best to use though this is sometimes hard to see on the darker material, variations of this high quality lino include “Artoleum” “Linoleum”&“Real” depending on the effect i'm trying to achieve and amount of detail that will go into the piece, I choose a sheet taken from a roll of Marmoleum, searching for the right pattern in the colour mix that will suit my idea.
2. Having drawn the design and borders its then time to start carving , I usually carve in the borders first as the straight lines and use of the tools can warm up the strength in the arms enough that carving the more detailed parts becomes more assured. Once the borders are complete I then proceed to carve the outline of the actual image itself, again taking on the longer straighter lines first. This done, I now need to mark the center of the piece and start carving the relief work. This is where the lines are singularly carved out to reveal the picture or design, by carving each line back to a center point you also gives each piece charm and depth creating an almost three dimensional feel to the work. By changing the direction of the carve I can also add “ghosted “ images into the piece or create additional detail.
3. Once I complete the carving I erase any excess pencil marks and clean off all debris and dust, using a cotton rag or cloth I clean off the fine dust with water and allow the piece to dry.
4. Polishing the piece restores the hard surface to the lino also bringing the original color back. It can take many layers of polish to put a high shine onto the piece, the first coat is a mix of water and polish (highest quality diamond shine polish only). I mix 5 parts water to 1 part polish as a first coat, this enables the polish to soak deep into the surface and fibers of the material strengthening it. The next coat will be 4 parts water and 1 part polish, the next 3 parts water 1 part polish and so on until you are applying the final coat which is of undiluted polish. After each coat of polish the piece must dry fully to ensure that the following coats of polish take. This is also important when achieving the shine on the final coat. Once polished the piece becomes as hard as stone to touch and is protected against water, moisture, scratch, fade, scorch marks or other such damage.
5. Mounting the piece, as marmoleum is as flexible as it is durable before polishing a piece can be mounted just about anywhere, ie. straight onto a wall, floor or ceiling, as a interior design feature or as decoration, for the most part I mount my work on mdmf sheets using strong contact adhiecive and then frame the piece according to size and design or preference of the client. Concept To begin a piece is to say there was a start to the process, where as in reality there is no point at which I could say “that is where the idea came from” and “this is where started from”. In acuality the idea itself may have been an acummilation of many ideas born through experience and technique, as an artist portraying the expressions that are the essence of myself I could not say there is singular meaning to my work, I would like to think that no matter how much I make an expression portray itself in its true and honest meaning to me, that it will always be a different expression taken by the artist that views it. I say artist because we are all in our own right artists and the images and expression we perceive are the accumulation of our own make up.