Test strips and heartache

test stripsI’ve just over two months left until the exhibition, to say its not going well would be an understatement. I’ve produced so many poor quality or failed plates I can not not believe the waste of material and time. More misses than hits, and although the ratio is getting better I’m not even a third of the way to completing the prints and I’ve still to get them to the calligraphers and printers.
I’m becoming disheartened and worried I won’t finish on time, putting unachievable targets on every printing session in the hope to catch up and when the results are not obtained I feel the failings hitting me hard.

I’ve put so much into this project already, an imperfect finish would be unjust ending to a long journey. Im now test striping ever image before producing anymore polymer plates but its time consuming and something I had not factored into my time scale. The amount of time I am spend in the print workshop is something else I had not test stripsanticipated and a cost I can not factor into the budget.

With all of this going on, and the pressure to complete I can say with true conviction I do love the process more than ever and have ideas of other prints I can do once this project is complete. Not that I will be heading to the studio straight after everything is complete with this one. Its just something  to think about once I’ve had a little break.

The printer’s help I had hoped for in producing the plates has been too busy with is own work, this has had a massive affect on the progress of the project but there can always be positives within these situations and being thrown in at the deep end on such a high learning curve is helping me to understand the process in a way I’d not have been able to do had I been able to rely on his help.

I continue to look for other studios with access to their facilities in hope the extra time will allow me to catch up, continuing with my unachievable targets. Advise from friends is becoming unwanted as much as their reassurances I’ll get it all done, after all I’ve two months apparently.
Trying to explain how long each print can take from start to finish and its no flick of a switch like digital is pointless. Without trying it out for yourself its hard to imagine the timely process, its no darkroom printing.inked fingers

This little picture to my right shows the permanent state of my nails, cleaned as to not leave black marks but appallingly stains. I’ve given up trying to clean them any better…