Drawing for linocuts

Developing drawing as a skill is something that is lifelong. Drawing for linocuts and linocut design work takes the drawing skills a bit further by using them to work the image into a design that you can use to carve out and print as a linocut print.

The two designs below are early works I developed in 2000 for linocut designs. I had decided to not work with flowers in vases – I was aware of Margaret Preston’s linocut work and made the decision to move directly away from her style first by simply not using designs of flowers in vases. Other linocut artists have chosen to still do flowers in vases – still life – and pushed the design by developing different ways of presenting and carving those linocuts.

Below are some of the drawings I developed into linocut designs and a bit of my thinking about the process I was using at the time in working drawings into designs.

My choice was to create firstly a series of ‘frames’ in which to sit the wildflowers and for these two the central figure is the Waratah – the NSW State Floral Emblem.

I had been learning some calligraphy and wanted to incorporate that into my designs at this stage. The above two designs were simply ‘naming’ the print but the one below took it a step further incorporating the ‘tag’ into the framework of the design.

A swathe of gum blossoms across a panel, those gorgeous starry flowers set against plain and simple but elegant leaves.

The gorgeous red grevileas dropping like pendants from the leaf structures above.

The veined leaf patterns st against the ‘brush and stars’ of the flowers – red with yellow starlets set against flat pale green.

The graceful soft flannel flowers moving in and out of the frames.

An additional idea at this time was to start to develop the ‘in the frame out of the frame’ designs.

Christmas Bush flowers spilling outside a simple pared back black frame.

The frames within frames Paperbark – those gorgeous veined leaves.


This was later incorporated by a graphic artist into a cd cover.

Still framing the flowers but the drawing levels have increased and the simple waratahs from 2000 are becoming more detailed with additional attention to detail.

The series of designs in this format were developed from the idea of Art Deco – tall elegant framed.

The complex drawing and design below was frames within frames, in and out of frames with the overlayed central panel washing through. Detailed drawing.

Copyright – Lynette Weir

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