Original linocuts by Edinburgh-based printmaker Masha Tiplady
I work in printmaking technique called linocut, which involves chiselling a design into a linoleum surface that is then inked with a brayer and produces an image. I hand-print all my linocuts, one by one, using a custom built printing press, or, more often, just with the back of a wooden spoon. That means that there can be slight differences between the prints in the same edition depending on the amount of ink, the pressure I applied etc, making each print unique.
To me, linocut is a perfect medium, which combines a thorough planning and methodical labour-intensive process with an element of a complete surprise- you really don't get to see the final result until you’ve drawn your picture on lino, then carved it, then inked it and rolled it out on paper. I also like the fact that linocut allows for pretty much endless possibilities of experimenting with colours, always with subtly different and often exciting results.
I find my inspiration in things that interest me: music, books, history and retro fashion. Beginning of the 20th century and 50s-70s are, perhaps, my two favourite eras, I find their aesthetics and culture absolutely fascinating and often find myself going back to them in my prints.
To make my linoprints I mostly use Picasso's reduction method: a block of lino is carved and then printed in the first colour, it is then cleaned, carved again and printed in the second colour and so on. At each stage of the process the size of the printing area is reduced, hence the name. With this cutting method, the block of lino is destroyed in the process so the edition can never be reprinted.