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  • Writer's pictureMary Parker

Over the last few weeks I've been slowly working on some new linocuts, and also on getting things ready for a new stockist. The new ones involve continuing with the small bottle oven at Gladstone Pottery Museum, the second colourway is now started with two colours down on what I hope will be a more naturalistic edition, with a light red-brick tone on the surrounding area, and a base yellow brick for the oven, kiln furniture which is to the side, and cobbles. Now that this version is done, I can cut out the areas where I want to keep these colours on the lino ready for the next layer.

The drawing for the Twyfords bottle kilns with scaffolding has gone on the back burner for now, with the Trentham Gardens image overtaking it - I had hoped to get it done to send off with my batch to the new place (more below) but it was not to be... However, progress has still been made, and the drawing is transferred to lino with the lines now having been drawn over with Indian Ink. It's curing for a while now so that when I clean it down with meths it should retain a good clear line still. When I've cleaned it down after only a couple of days in the past it's nearly removed the lot! A good week is much better if you can spare the time.

Josiah & Co at World of Wedgwood where I have a lot of my original bottle oven linocuts for sale has just had a massive expansion of premises, I'm looking forward very much to visiting soon! However, this week I was able to deliver a consignment of work that has been only ever been for sale on my Folksy shop , and three of my husband Ian's paintings, to a brand new shop / gallery /workshop in Uttoxeter, Staffordshire, which is being set up and run by Angie from Made in Staffs called Two Silver Pennies. It's planned to be opening on April the 20th and will be selling work by a number of Staffordshire artists and craftspeople!

Last of all, but equally as exciting, I finally had a couple of sales on my Folksy store after a drought since last summer. I was too pleasantly shocked to do a happy dance! These are the pieces that were posted off to their new homes:

I hope you've enjoyed this update, more soon!

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  • Writer's pictureMary Parker

My linocut of Gladstone Pottery Museum's smallest bottle oven is now properly underway, the first colour is on paper for the first set, and when time allows I'll get the second colourway started too. The oil-based inks need to to dry out for a couple of days, here they're suspended on my Pooki Press drying rack which hangs over a door and is nicely compact, perfect for my small editions!

I have also been working on another set of cards, this time using my oldest lino block which was the first thing I made when I started printmaking again over a decade ago. This boat is taken from a drawing made in 1990 in Cardiff Docks, as it was then.

Here you can see a variety of ways that I've inked this one up, the centre set are this last week's work. The drawing of the boat resting on the mud in the docks is definitely a historic image as this area is now Cardiff Bay, permanently flooded and maintained by the barrage, and redeveloped as a major tourist destination.

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  • Writer's pictureMary Parker

... I have made slow progress, but things are afoot! Work is progressing on my next bottle kiln linocut, the smallest one at Gladstone Pottery Museum and I'm hoping to print the first of three colours soon.

A very exciting opportunity is coming up in conjunction with Made In Staffs in the next month or so, as a new community gallery, shop and workspace is opening in Church Street, Uttoxeter. Called Two Silver Pennies , it will showcase Staffordshire artists and crafters, giving customers the opportunity to buy unique products handmade in the county. It will also house two small businesses, as well as hosting a meeting space for workshops. I am extremely happy to be involved and will have a number of my original linocuts for sale when it opens in April!

I have recently been trying to track down a few old single-colour lino blocks that I use for hand-printed cards. So far two have eluded me, but the old faithful pelargonium block has been pressed into service again, ten years old and still going strong. I enjoyed working through some shades from salmon to shocking pink, it was a satisfying session of printing. Hopefully my rose and fishing boat blocks will surface soon..... These cards are available through my Folksy shop and will also be at Two Silver Pennies.

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