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HomeArts & CultureGrace Gillespie's Vibrant Linocut Prints of Flowers and Foliage Tap Into Her...

Grace Gillespie’s Vibrant Linocut Prints of Flowers and Foliage Tap Into Her Artistic Roots — Colossal


#flowers #linocuts #engraving

February 8, 2024

Kate Mothes

All images © Grace Gillespie, shared with permission.

Grace Gillespie grew up in an artistic home, but initially resisted pursuing visual art, especially printmaking, because it was something her parents excelled at. “I guess she wanted my own ‘thing,’” she tells Colossal, who for most of her twenties was music. Then, during the pandemic, she found herself laid off, disillusioned with the music industry, and back at her parents’ house in Devon, England.

During his six-month stay, Gillespie had access to a large engraving press belonging to his mother, artist Sarah Gillespie. “I decided to try my hand at linocutting and immediately became very addicted!” says the artist. “I was also very lucky that (my parents) had a lot of linoleum and old tools lying around, a little old and rusty, but they worked.”

Gillespie was initially drawn to flowers because, in the height of summer, they exploded in her parents’ garden. She found comfort and energy in its variety of colors and textures. “I think both this new love of gardens and plants, and the new world of printing, really saved me from some pretty difficult times related to the pandemic,” she says. “I pretty much left music behind, moved house and realized I had an anxiety disorder in the space of a few months, and print really helped me cope and keep my brain inspired to create.”

Reduced printing, the technique of carving the surface of linoleum or wood to create overlapping surfaces, inspired Gillespie to play with color and complexity. “I love the surprise of when you lift the paper and reveal a print…sometimes it’s a surprise mistake!” she says. “It’s a fun process and a lot of things can go wrong…. But it makes it even more satisfying when you peel back the paper and reveal something really juicy and satisfying.”

See more on Gillespie’s Instagram and visit her Etsy store to purchase prints.

A colorful linocut floral print.

A linocut print of green flowers.

A series of linocut prints of chrysanthemums hanging to dry on a studio wall.

A linocut print of blue flowers. Linocut prints of a vase with flowers hanging on clothespins.

A linocut print of a dahlia.

Two images, side by side, showing the process of making a linocut print.  On the left, red ink is passed over a piece of linoleum.  On the right, the prints dry on a rack.

A linocut print of three flowers.

#flowers #linocuts #engraving

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