Self- Portrait

I thought it was time I updated my business cards and decided to create a self-portrait and at the same time experiment with some colour ways.

There is a great facebook site called Linocut Friends and I used this forum to see what people thought was the most popular version, the Orange and Blue one won hands down –

But the other two shown above recieved enough votes to make me think about it. One of the suggestions on the comments was to print a quantity of business cards using the most popular designs and see how they went at the craft fairs I attend – so I have done just that.


I start with a photograph, I have a couple of APPs on my iPad that I use to work out colours and structure- what and were to cut, see some examples below – The APPs are PhotoStudio and recently Photo Lab – these are free versions – I find that these help with the planning and colour options.

I then start by making a Black and White image based on one of the above ideas and print this using a laser printer – the toner varity. I then iron this onto the Lino, if yopu paln to do this be careful as too much heat and the lino will bubble, leaving voids in the lino and this can result in bits coming away during the cutting process. Depending on the image and the Lino I end up with enough of an impression of were the main elements of the face are and use this as the basis of the drawing phase, you can see the result in the Header image – this is with the highlights already cut, the tonal areas are from the iorning process. Once I am happy with the drawing I wipe over the lino with some red Lino ink – I look at a number of the images above on my Ipad as I cut the Lino – the advantage of using the iPad is you can reverse the image so it matches the image on the Lino and increase the size of different areas to show more detail.

I often use 1 stage of the Lino cutting process to add multi colours creating masks to allow this see image 1, I used  masking tape and then cut around the image to create a mask, using this to ink and then removing the mask before laying on the paper, this worked in this case as I only printed 4 different versions of each colour combination as I dont plan to print any editions of the image. Image 2 shows yellow base colour added after the orange printing. Image 3 shows the Sky Blue added after the second cut – due to the yellow underneath this has gone a little green. Image 4 shows the final darker Blue added after the last Lino Cut. Image 5 is a single colour print off the last Lino cut.

I will post an image of the Business cards once I have them