Contemporary artist Tanujaa Rane did her MFA in printmaking from Sir JJ School of Arts and primarily works in the medium of Drypoint.
For the first session conducted by Tanujaa Rane, Sir JJ School of Arts was gracious enough to open up their very own print studio to our lot of budding artists.
Nikhil from Mohile Parikh, our partners for the Partner a Master Program, took them on a journey way back to China in 105 A.D where print making first began. From there they slowly explored the emergence of print, its transition into a crucial form of art and all the various styles and methods that developed under this discipline. The students were constantly posed with questions that made them actually think about the relevance and importance of print. “Why did print originate in China?”, “How did it spread across the world?”, “Why was print so revolutionary?”
They then got familiar with works of various prominent printmakers like Rembrandt, Albrecht von Durer and Käthe Kollwitz and India masters like Raja Ravi Verma, Jyoti Bhatt and Krishna Reddy.
Once they had a basic idea about the history of printmaking Tanujaa Rane kicked off the workshop by narrowing down to her favourite method, drypoint.
Drypoint is the technique in which an image is incised into a plate with a hard-pointed “needle” of metal. Traditionally the plates used were copper, but now zinc, or Plexiglas, are also commonly used. For this work shop we used Plexiglas to create the plates.
Once the image is complete, offset ink is dabbed onto the plate until it creates a thin layer, then a cloth or kite paper is used to wipe away excess ink. And voila! The plate is ready to proof print.
After a proof print the artist can decide if he or she wants to make any alterations to the plate before doing a final print. They must also sign and number all the prints they take.
The students followed the same process described above, taking inspiration from nature and fantasy to create their images. Once they had made their plates ready and applied the ink, they damped the paper and set up the printing press. Using the press was another exciting event for the participants.
During this session not only did they learn the basics of the drypoint process they also got to delve into why printmaking was so significant in shaping face of everything as we know it today.
We would like to thank the Sir JJ School of art for letting us use their print studio for the workshop.