Combining a Home and Studio Printmaking Practice – Ruth Ander

I came to Bristol in 1998 to do a degree in illustration at Bower Ashton.  Since then I’ve been developing and honing my hand mono-printing. An advocate of low-tech printing, often on the kitchen table, and minimal materials (usually a smooth surface, rubber roller and oil paints), I’ve expanded my practice over the last couple of years by combining mono-print with intaglio and collage.


I exhibit widely and sell my work, mainly in the South West, and currently combine making art with parenting and a day job for part of my week.  Eventually, I’d like to spend most of my week making art.

Most of my pieces are now started at Spike Print Studio by making a drypoint print with mono-printed coloured tissue collaged into it during the printing process. This is called chine colle – the pressure of the press is so great that the collage almost becomes part of the paper. It also means I can make lines, colour and texture all with one pass through the printing press.

After, each print is worked on at home, with low-tech hand printing techniques- no press, just hand pressure to take impressions from a plastic ‘plate’ onto the paper.



Most of my printmaking practice, since graduating in 2001, has involved mono-printing by hand, at home. It’s how I worked out how to make my atmospheric, large prints on tissue paper- without studio rules or anyone looking over my shoulder!

In 2018, I was one of the recipients of the first Spike Print Studio/University of the West of England scholarships, and it led me to fall in love with etching- especially drypoint- all over again. Now I combine printing drypoint plates at SPS with more experimental mark-making at home to make one-off prints.

I usually start by printing a series of drypoint with a press at the SPS, adding in mono-printed tissue paper as chine colle. Once these are dry, they come back to my shed studio at home and I apply mono print marks over the top. I often take ‘ghost prints’ onto tissue paper from the ink left on my surface and so end up with a ‘library’ of beautiful textured papers ready to add as chine colle to the next series.

The series, therefore, have a common language of marks and colours that run through them. The two practices perfectly dovetail into one another, allowing for rich velvety line alongside gestural marks and texture- the pre-planned with the experimental and spontaneous.

You can see more prints at:
and follow my process on Instagram: @RuthAnderrints