I had initially contacted Jenny Gunning in February with a host of questions and after a week or so I arranged a visit to her Ironbridge Studio.
Initially I was looking at the Little Thumper or No.1 press and Jenny said she would make sure both were available to try. The first of the Ironbridge February floods occurred and I phoned Jenny a day or so before the visit to check it was ok. They had managed to clean up and were open for business. I also suggested I might prefer a No. 2 press and to her credit she arranged for this to be available too! I was very impressed when I arrived to see that the studio had been dried out and that Jenny had all three presses, together with different handles and stands fo me to try.
The workshop was great, I went through printing both Linocuts and Drypoint. Jenny and Dave were very carful with my Linocuts and delicate Perspex Drypoint’s and showed my how to ink up and what pressure to print with.
We went though different rollers- I preferred the medium shore spindle roller, different inks, paper, mats, registration systems and even Drypoint tools. I learnt lots! Jenny and Dave are excellent tutors, quickly gauging your interest and the direction you wish to focus on – they are both very good.
I ended up purchasing the No. 2 press together with the wheeled stand and the magnificent 48” wheel. I also bought the 10” spindle roller, ink, several sets of runners, a registration plate and other assorted bits. I was amazed when it all went into the van…… We even had time to look around Ironbridge, the impressive bridge and the flood defences.
Overall it felt like a great day out, I really enjoyed myself.
Two months later and I’m getting on well having now completed the studio and run off my
first 3 colour linocut. It’s really useful to be able to contact Jenny and ask questions and her advice is spot on.
I love the direct drive on the press, you get great feedback when you print. It’s very easy to set the pressure and make small adjustments. I have already got a feel for the pressure and can set it up instantly for a r
epeat printing run. The bed is a good size giving plenty of room to set up. It’s well worth getting the wheels stand as it’s very convenient to move it out of the way when not printing.
I’d also like to praise the registration system that Ironbridge Fine Arts sell. I can confirm it’s very simple to use and produces great results.
You can see my new press in my garage conversion to a studio plus a sample of my work here.
If you would like any more details about my work or future exhibitions please get in touch with Jenny or Sarah at the Gallery 01952 434033