Delighted to teach a 3 hour HaveAGo! session at the Lady Franklin Gallery on Friday 15 November 2019 on Scratchboard. The course covered a whole range of issues for students and gave them an opportunity to try different scratchboard surfaces (including the artist/museum quality Ampersand Scratchbord and the UK scraperboard) and tools (ranging from craft knives, tattoo needles, erasers, sandpaper, oil-free steel wool and fibreglass brushes – the latter being a definite favourite!). I also alerted them to some of the key and respected texts in this area (Ruth Lozner (1990) and Diana Lee (2012)) (which Susie Meech said she would kindly acquire for the Society’s library). I also advised on various tips and tricks (such as a simple architectural shield for perfect straight lines) and how to fix any errors (a major fear for new scratchboard users). I also covered various marks or strokes such as stippling, feathering, cross hatching, parallel lines and taking out larger areas of black ink. I demonstrated how to start off a piece, including how to transfer some major guidelines for the image on to your scratchboard using white transfer paper. I also explored the ability to add colour to works using various mediums including non waxy colour pencil, Ampersand’s specialist inks, acrylic, oils etc. (whilst first removing any black dust which can tend to make the colours go muddy). I also stressed the need to take out more of the black if you were intending to add colour.
In addition, I gave a basic outline of Claybord by Ampersand – the white version of Scratchbord, where you paint your image and then scratch in the detail.
We also discussed finishing off a piece with matt varnish, practising your signature and framing options including the specially designed Ampersand floating frames. Glass is optional if the work is properly protected with varnish.
Finally, I advised the group about some well respected scratchboard artists here in Australia (including Patrick Hedges and Carol Gorenko) and referred them to the Wet Canvas forum on Scratchboard and the International Society for scratchboard artists.
The workshop was very well received with many stating that they were off to buy some new tools and some scratchboard to give it a more concentrated (and less pressured) effort. Hoping to see some scratchboard works gracing the Lady Franklin Gallery walls soon!