Pajama Game Backdrops 

For the last few weeks I have been holed up at the Nomad Theatre painting the backdrops for their new production Pajama Game, a musical based around a pay dispute in a pajama factory.

First step was to cover up the old Cinderella backdrop and create a base for the new scene: Green for a forest and blue for a river.

Then I started to add in the details

I painted the tree foliage in using a sponge and as many different shades of green as I mix to give the scene shadows and highlights.

Then I added details on the bridge and the forest floor.

Hybrid bird

Hybrid bird

For this piece I wanted to mix different printing techniques, adding a background to the etch that would be completely original.

Before printing I mixed up all the inks I wanted with linseed oil. This makes life a lot less rushed once printing gets going and avoids paints drying out.

The mono printing process requires wet paper, so first it gets a water bath soaking.

water bath for paper.

Using a paintbrush and white spirit I painted the inks on plastic sheeting then placed it on the paper and ran the plate-ink-paper sandwich through the press.

Ink applyed to the printing plate.

I repeated this process six times to get six different images. After printing each piece of paper I placed them back in the water bath so that they didn’t dry out before the next step.

the six mono prints.

Then I used printers ink mixed with Vaseline to grind into the etching plate and put the sandwich through another roll of the press.

mono print with etching bird on top. 

Each image is different. Some of them work and some of them really don’t, but that is part of the fun.

the finished prints hanging up to dry.


It’s behind you!

The panto scenery is finally finished. It was stumped initially on how to finish the ballroom cloth. The answer when I think about it was obvious, so obvious it took me until the day before the show goes up to work it out! Aball with a famous midnight finish should have a NIGHT sky (with glitter). 


The glitter is a little bit hard to see but I promise it is compleatly covered with the stuff. In almost every colour imaginable.  

As you can see I have plenty of glitter.
I also finished off some of the prop houses for the panto village and part of Hardup Hall (Cinderellas) house. All I need now is the director to sign off on everything and I can try say “its behind you ” with pleasure as an audience member on Saturday. 


Little bird

This little bird is a combination of a very simple mono print and a dry point etching. Because of the mono print, the colour underneath is bird is the same, and yet very different.

First I placed a plate of toughened glass over the etching and painted a yellow bird shape.

Inked plate before printing.


Then I ran it through the press.

After running the plate through the press.


Little bird layer 1.

Then the prints went for a bath to make the paper wet for the etch print.

The etching plate after printing.


Finished Little bird.

The final image is small and simple, but effective.