On visiting Glasgow Print Studio on Saturday 11th January, I was struck by the scale and quality of artworks on display. What immediately caught my attention was the work of Calum McClure, a graduate of Edinburgh College of Art in 2010. His wonderful selection of monoprints on display were vibrant, full of life and dynamism. This artist’s focus appears centred upon landscapes and the artistic process of representing such landscapes. The way the artist understands and uses paint and inks was intriguing. He seemed to create light, shadow and reflections with a few marks, brush strokes and impressions. Such atmospheric effects were created throughout his monoprints from complete abstractions to representational imagery. The imagery evoked such a sense of serenity, beauty and emotion.
As stated by Glasgow Print Studio and the artist…
The monotype technique has led him to explore his overall theme of landscape and our relationship with it, in ever bolder and more abstract ways. The motif of reflection is used throughout the work whether it is a tree in a stream or a reflection in a train window. A visual layering often challenges the viewer to think about what is being painted, what the varied marks represent and the tactile nature of the painting process.
Through a varied use of paint McClure explores the complexity of images taken from nature that at first look simple. Recent work has also taken inspiration from film stills, photographs from train windows or taken whilst walking. Current themes include: the nocturne, botanic gardens, the idea of an ‘in-between image’, and more generally light and its reflective qualities.
From seeing this range of monoprints on display I have been encouraged to revisit monoprints for their own sake as well as for preparatory work for textiles. This has made me realise that I have possibly not sufficiently explored all the possibilities that monoprinting has to offer, to try different techniques. Monoprinting is very immediate and quick which will help me be less ponderous and more freed up to experiment. I aim to extend my experience of the subtractive method, ghost printing with masking techniques and collage printing.