Linocuts are relief prints. The surface of a piece of lino is carved into with gouges or chisels to create the design. It is then inked with a roller. A sheet of paper is laid on top of the lino and the image is printed in a press. Because a linocut is basically like a giant stamp, the image appears in reverse after printing, so the artist needs to think backwards while carving the design, especially if it includes text. Linocuts can be as simple or as complex as the artist wishes. A different block may be used for different colours or the relief surface may be carved away between inkings to change the parts which are inked. Linocuts are generally produced in small editions as the lino block tends to deteriorate with use. Creating linocuts is not for the faint hearted. Once a cut is made, there’s no going back, but skilled printmakers can produce wonderful effects.

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