Meet the Maker: Evelyn Polk
I'm a full time abstract artist who primarily uses a range of printmaking techniques to make art and sometimes I mix it up a bit by adding paint or collage to my prints. I teach printmaking classes from my studio at home in Suffolk.
Describe your printmaking process.
I love to layer different printmaking techniques together, usually starting with mono or lino printed shapes. I continue to layer shapes and colour using lino cuts, mono printing and drypoint prints until I'm happy with the result. So the prints evolve as I add layers and there's no preconceived idea of what I'm wanting to create, apart from the colour which I usually have planned before I start.
How and where did you learn to print?
I initially learnt to print at college and learnt more when I went to Cambridge School of Art on a BA Hons Fine Art/Printmaking Course.
When I was first introduced to Printmaking at college, something clicked and I took to it instantly, I fell in love with the endless possibilities printmaking offered and was hooked. I'm attracted to the quality of line, textures, transparencies of colour and the chance element printmaking delivers.
Where do you work?
I work in my studio my husband built me at the very end of our garden, the studio was built mostly from reclaimed materials so it's very quirky and a lovely place to create.
Describe a typical day in your studio.
A typical day in my studio involves choosing the right music which goes on before I do anything. If I'm starting new work I'll start by printing the first layer of shapes and a colour from my chosen colour palette. I use oil based etching inks, they can take up to a week to dry, while I'm waiting I'll work in my sketchbook, drawing or collaging ideas for future work, cut new lino blocks or make collagraph plates.
How long have you been printmaking?
I've been printmaking ever since I was introduced to print at college, so for 22 years.
What inspires you?
Found objects, shapes and materials inspire me. I use the resources around me in everyday life to feed my ideas, often sketching outside along the coastline. I enjoy this way of working because of the unpredictability of what I may find next, which informs my next body of work.
Where can we see your work? Where do you sell?
I sell mostly at galleries and art fairs which differs every year but you can find out where I'll be next next on my website.
What will we be seeing from you next?
I'm planning on experimenting with liquid tape which I can brush on my prints between layers to reveal the layer underneath and liquid carborundum which I can also brush on which will hold the ink and give me dark printed brush marks.
Do you have any advice for other printmakers and creatives?
Advice I would give to printmakers or others who want to try printmaking, is to experiment a lot, embrace the mistakes, it's about learning and don't be afraid to mix it up, prints don't have to be made using one technique.
To see more from Evelyn follow her on Instagram.