Experimental Collagraph Workshop with Charles Shearer


Saturday 3rd September 2022

10.30am – 4.30pm


Partners of  University of the West of England Impact 12 International Print Conference

The incredible Charles Shearer will run a 1  day workshop  which will introduce you to an exciting process that would suit anyone wishing to develop their creative ideas. No previous experience of printmaking should be a barrier. All materials will be provided and a demonstration will be given at every stage.

Charles says:

The  main theme for this day is merging and metamorphosis but I think you might find Printmakers’ Garden such a great theme for generating ideas. Please choose or even combine… So much can be created within and around in the shapes, composition, and layering as you go along. Nothing has to be ‘finished’ and I hope that at the end of the session you will have an exciting body of work… to inspire future work… If all are agreed we will have a small showing at 4.30pm.

Following a brief introductory talk we will begin with a period of experimentation using the display board and a range of tools, some adapted specifically for this purpose, through to the application of stencilled colours, textured materials and at some stage can be combined with various package material, cardboard, corrugated paper, bubblewrap etc. We will print plates directly as relief images on a range of papers but also through intaglio methods on dampened printing paper.

Suggested references: Work by the printmakers John & Tim Ross and Clare Romano. Also the work of Katherine Jones. You will find many artists / printmakers freely demonstrating their craft on web sites such as Pinterest and Youtube You may also find inspiration in the works of the surrealists, the shapes forms and colour of the Russian constructivist period. The work of Alfred Kubin. The works of Barbara Hepworth, Prunella Clough, Wilhelmina Barnes-Graham, Peter Lanyon and Ben Nicholson. Altogether they form a very strong influence.

We will provide all materials but you are welcome to bring your own.  Information will be sent on booking.

Charles Shearer was born in Kirkwall, Orkney, in 1956 and studied at Gray’s School of Art, Aberdeen and at the Royal College of Art, London. His primary interest is in landscape and in particular those places and spaces that nature has reclaimed. Charles makes regular visits to Southern Ireland in his search for material, plotting his routes from ruin to ruin. Those once great mansions remain, ivy clad and ravaged by near a century of weathering, all in glorious neglect. Industrial spoil heaps and edge of town brown field sites also attract by their transience, their hoardings, pylons, stagnant pools and rutted tracks.
Everything begins and is developed through drawing, this is fundamental to what he does so the sketchbook has become an ongoing depository for working ideas and developments as well as visually documenting his day to day observations and the journeys he makes about the land.

“My interest in printmaking, with all the creative possibilities inherent within the media has made the print room a perfect environment in which to engage with machines and materials to create and develop ideas. Alongside traditional printing media such as etching, lino and woodcut printing and the more free methods of mono and stencil printing where the chance and accidental play a vital part. It is the crafting and sculpting of the humble cardboard or collagraph plate that I find most satisfying. Images of subtle depth and great complexity can be achieved using only a cheap craft knife and a range of tools, some specially adapted for the purpose. It requires the careful inking and layering of colour and finally the exacting pressure of the press to give best and consistent results. I find the printing plates after use have a beauty in themselves and have them propped up like sculptures around my studio.”

Gallery Images: l to r

Double head (printing plate)

Varnished printing plate (2 x A1)

Detail of cover Illustration (2 colour collagraph)


Spaces available