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How to make a casting to use as a collagraph print.

Since doing the castings from the pillowcases and subsequent prints i have been asked by a few people to explain the process. So here is a brief point by point set of instructions.

1. Materials you will need: household filler in powder form, waterproof PVA glue made in to 50/50 mixture with water, flexible plastic bowl, spatulas, fabric to cast, backing board which can be mountboard, plywood or perspex

2. Seal the backing board, if using card or plywood, with a thin coat of PVA/water mix, on both sides and leave to dry thoroughly.

3. Pour some of the PVA/water mixture in to the bowl and add the powder filler. Mix with a thin spatula until smooth and no lumps. You need a consistency similar to very thick batter.

4. Take the sealed and dried backing board and apply a thin layer of plaster, evenly all over. Smooth out with a wide spatula

5. Take the fabric that you want to take a casting of and carefully lay it onto the plastered board (making sure any design is face down). Smooth down gently on the back of the fabric to ensure you get a good impression and leave the plaster to go off for about 5 minutes.

6. Carefully peel back a corner of the fabric. It should come away from the plaster cleanly. If any plaster is sticking to the fabric then gently press back down and leave for another few minutes.

7. When the fabric is completely peeled away, leave the casting to dry thoroughly (at least 24 hours) before the next stage which will be to get it ready to use as a printing plate.

The next step; How to print using the casting, coming soon

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