POSTCARD-Sixth Series

Art, Comics June 16, 2018

Continuing my Blogging with another post profiling the design and production of my art postcards…(see links to the previous five POSTCARD posts below). This time around I am looking at the process stage rather than the finished outcome that has been shown in my previous POSTCARD posts. Generally the postcards are given multiple layers of graphic treatment, whether through painting or printmaking or a combination of the two. In this post I have displayed four examples of the first stage of printmaking, and one of the second stage, of a series of cards from selected different editions over the years. These images have been taken from the design and printing of the base layer of the image prior to adding overlays such as additional detail, colour, embellishment and logo stamping. The photos show the first pass of a printmaking run, of putting down the base layer, except for the third example that has two layers, one base layer plus one overlay. The initial layer will be the first of more layers, perhaps two, three, four or more, that will follow.

Perhaps the most interesting aspect at this stage of the printmaking to discern is the noting of differences in the design of the cards in the same edition. Although the completed print run of cards will carry the same title no two cards will be exactly alike due to variations in the printed layers. There are no exact duplicates. This is no accident but a deliberate approach and is the reason that all of the postcards in the batch will technically be classified as monoprints i.e. not identical despite the whole batch carrying the same title. At the end of the print run following the addition of a few more layers this difference will remain discernible. So all of the finished cards will have minor differences from each other whilst still sharing the same nomenclature and date of production.

Here is another photo of a set of postcards that was taken following the design and printing of the base layer of the image in the studio. The variation and difference in appearance of these cards, from the same batch and print run, is already discernible.

This group have had two passes across the print table, the base layer and then a second coating or overlay as can be seen in the photograph. The two layers of ink that can be perceived, a base layer in blue-black and a second that has been overlaid with a bluish-purple tint. The ink-stained wooden block used for printing the layers is located at the bottom right of the print table. In the printmaking process the block is inked and the blank cards laid face down on it then pressed into/against the ink, then left, wet side up, to dry.

This lot have quite a disparate base layer design, almost as if it has been altered during the run. This can happen but in this case there are three distinct base designs in play using a similar tone and hue of ink. This will result in three separate series of postcards. Note the musical accompaniement to the printmaking process, David Bowie on this occasion. I find listening to music whilst I work both calming and inspiring.

Finally, here is a set of printed postcards with a lot of variation in the base layer of the cards both in terms of pattern shape and intensity. Despite the differences the cards in this set will be regarded as “of a series” and carry the same batch title.

NOTE: These photos were taken over a period of a few years and document the establishment of a work methodology that I maintain today with one or two improvements. I thought it would be interesting to show how my procedure developed and I plan on doing further Blog posts on other aspects and the subsequent stages of a typical print run of my art postcard design and production.

All photos postcards, postcard art and printmaking by Dr. Michael Hill aka Doctor Comics.

My previous POSTCARD posts form part of my graphic based material that includes painting, printmaking, cartooning and scrapbooking:  THE GRAFIK GUITAR BOOKBINDING THE GRAFIK GUITAR CARTOON MORE CARTOONS RESEARCH CARTOONS UNIVERSITY CARTOONS POSTCARD POSTCARD-Second Series   POSTCARD-Third Series POSTCARD-Fourth Series POSTCARD-Fifth Series PRINT Fish One PRINT Fish Two    SCRAPBOOK SCRAPBOOK-More Pages SCRAPBOOK-A Few Pages More 

plus all of the posts documenting the production of my artist book/comic/graphic novel BLOTTING PAPER:  Issue #1: No.1 No.2 No.3 No.4 No.5   No.6    No.7    No.8    No.9    No.10    No.11   No.12   No.13  Issue #2:  No.14    No.15   No.16    No.17   No.18    No.19   No.20 No.21    No.22    No.23    No.24    No.25    No.26    No.27    No.28    No.29  Issue #3:  No.30   No.31   No.32   No.33   No.34   No.35   No.36  Issue #4: No.37   No.38   No.39   No.40   No.41   No.42   No.43   No.44  Issue #5: No.45   No.46   No.47   No.48


Creator and former Director of the Master of Animation course at the University of Technology, Sydney, Dr. Michael Hill has a Master's degree in animation and a PhD in comics studies, prompting his introduction on ABC Radio as “Doctor Comics”. A member of the editorial board of the International Journal of Comic Art, and former member of the Comics Grid Journal of Comics Scholarship and the Advisory Committee of the Q-Collection Comic Book Preservation Project, he has delivered public lectures on Comics, Anime and Manga and held academic directorships in Interdisciplinary Studies, Animation, Design and Visual Communication. Having donated his collection of research materials on Australian alternative comics to the National Library of Australia he is now active in the artistic domain, writing, drawing and printmaking, creating art postcards and prints and his own graphic novel Blotting Paper: The Recollected Graphical Impressions of Doctor Comics.