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Monotype Classes

Monotype/Familiar Places

Joyce Zavorskas
Monotype/Familiar Places

Create etchings or singular painterly impressions with oil base inks on smooth plexiglas transferred to paper with a gentle giant of a press. See Events Page for upcoming classes at Zavorskas Studio.

Classroom is air-conditioned, with two doors and eight windows to open and close as needed. 

Each student has a 7′ wide table.  Presses available are 36×60″ and 16×26″. Additional workspace upstairs. Vertical etching tank and copper and zinc plates available, as well as many large rollers and brayers, inks and paper.

Ocean Refuge monotype 18×27″ framed to 26×34″ private collection

Painting in France

Thinking back here on a rainy day in April, to the week of rain in the south of France when we visited a friend in April 2016. The one day of sun I backpacked my gear to the edge of the Gorge Gardon (near Pont du Gard)and set up to paint the winding River Gard, high up on limestone cliffs.
I have peacefully painted here over the years but that time tour groups appeared throughout the morning, talking and breaking the spell.
I never finished my second painting and recently threw it away, wish I hadn’t.

Documenting My Familiar

I have been quietly painting plein air for 35 years, documenting specific sites and gathering imagery for making monotypes and etchings during the colder months. I gravitate to presentations of nature surviving despite coastal storms. The humble strength of a dune or waterway endures natural onslaughts with stoic dignity.
I make my monotypes indoors during daylight hours working with natural light from eight windows.   
Newly printed monotypes drying. The large monotypes are printed one at a time on the 36×60” American French Tool press in the background. André Beaudoin designed and built and delivered this press to me from his workshop in Coventry, Rhode Island in 1976. It weighs 2,400 pounds. Turning the wheel moves the 500-pound press bed under a 500-pound steel roller. 
I love to draw and invest several hours developing a compelling composition with accurate values, enhancing nature’s curves that the camera flattens. I flip the plate so the finished drawing is in reverse when it gets inked.
Charbonnell oil base inks are applied to the plate in thin layers using small rubber brayers. I roll on several layers of inks to achieve an impressionist luminosity, “pink under the blue”, “ochre under the green”.
First layers complete… this plate is 18×27”
Now I mix the final actual greens of the trees and grasses.  The finished layers of ink create luminosity.
After many hours of brayering, I wipe the edges of the plate and bring it to the press bed. Dampened cotton rag BFK Rives paper from France is placed on top of the inked plate with two felt blankets to cushion it. I run the plate through the press with gentle pressure once only. The reversed image prints frontwards after all! Sanctuary monotype 18×27″ 2020
The transferred painting on 22×30″ paper is a monotype, a singular impression. The painted plate now has only a ghost layer of ink left.