Lancaster Artists Explore the World of Printing Press Art

Two printmakers, Suzanne Rogers and Sue King, are expanding the understanding of print art in their local circles.

“When you ask most people what a print is, they’re going to tell you it’s either something that comes out of your computer or something that you buy at Walmart in the art department,” King said. “This is nothing like that.”

Printmaking transfers images onto another surface, typically paper or fabric. Rogers and King are showcasing examples of solar plates, dry points, collagraph, and more. Each has a unique process that creates an original, diverse work of art. Whether it’s a 3-dimensional assemblage or linoleum reductions, the artists are exhibiting a new world of potential.

Rogers started creating when she attended Lancaster High School, where she now teaches. Meanwhile, King started as a textile artist and fell in love with printmaking when Rogers brought Dan Welden – the inventor of solar plates – to host a workshop in 2020. Together, they decided to start bringing printmaking to the local artist community.

“Leave your expectations at the door,” King advises. “Come see all the things that can be print. Have your mind opened and blown away.”

 

NOTE: Suzanne Rogers and Sue King’s work will be on display and for sale
at STUMP in Lancaster, 117 N. Columbus Street through May 16, 2023.

In addition to educating the community about artistic printing processes, the artists also want to get a group together to potentially start a collective.

“Presses are expensive so people work in co-ops,” Rogers said. They explained that printmaker collectives will typically work together in a studio to help cut the cost of needing a personal press.

In their announcement, the printmakers advertise, “The art of the print makes it possible for everyone to be able to afford a piece of fine art.” Rogers explains this is because of printing’s unique return.

“When you’re making prints, it might take 100 hours to make your plate and all your prints, but then you have 25 or 50 prints,” Rogers said. “You’re not just selling one painting, you have multiple prints. It makes it so you’re able to sell it to people much cheaper because you have so many of them.”

However, even though the prints are made from the same plate, each piece is still an original artwork. “Every one turns out different no matter how hard you try to make it the same,” King said. “I think that’s the beauty of it.” Rogers explains that no two prints will come out to be the same, calling them varied editions. While she doesn’t make additional edits to the finished piece, King says she tends to make additions with watercolors or different colored inks.

While they’ll be showcasing some pieces that will be worth a few hundred dollars, both artists will have items like bookmarks, small photos, and other creations. They estimate the average price will be about $35 to $50. “It just depends on how much work not only that it took to make the plate, but how much time it takes to print all that off,” King said. Rogers says she also takes into account the number of pieces she has. “I have a reduction that only has 12 prints left. That’s all there is.”

Both artists are heavily involved in their local arts community including Fathom and the Ohio Women’s Art Collective. King and Rogers express an appreciation for not only what art brings to their lives but also what people see in their creations.

“People will read into it what they want and that’s the beauty of artwork, it’s whatever you see in it,” King said.

Visit the printing press artwork exhibition of Suzanne Rogers and Sue King among the beautiful plants at STUMP on display from May 3 to May 16. To see more of their work, visit Suzanne Rogers (SuzyArt.com) at and SueKing (SueKingArts.com).

 

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By Eleanor Mathers

Eleanor Mathers is a lead contributor to The Lancaster Herald. As a freelance writer with a special interest in the arts, Eleanor contributes stories about the arts and artists. Besides running her blog and services at EleanorTypes.com, they can be found behind bookshelves and at coffee tables around Lancaster.