art, printmaking

The real world

drypoint print of pony by Eoin Mac Lochlainn

yes, I had a print on display in the Hunt Museum in Limerick and I didn’t even know it. I don’t know how long it’s been there. A bit embarrassing really.  But I got an email this morning, asking me for a current CV,  a concise list of recent shows, any additional relevant information – I think that they were just checking that I was still alive.

That’s nice, in a way  – that somebody cares, but it also means that I’m not “getting my message out there”.  Ah, but I’m not a politician, I spend a lot of the time on my own in my studio and maybe not enough time out there in what’s known as “the real world”.

Anyway, the drypoint print that had somehow found its way to the Hunt Museum was the one above entitled: Johnnie.  Johnnie was a pony who lived in the hills above Carlingford in Co. Louth. That’s all I can tell you about him really, except that he was not a pony who took kindly to curry combs, dandy brushes or to grooming in general. Let’s just say that he favoured the ‘windswept and interesting’ look.

Speaking of “the real world”, the print below was created when I was working on a series of drawings for my We are where we are exhibition some years ago in The Paul Kane Gallery.  “The real world” – what is that, really?  Is it any more real on the streets of Dublin, the streets of Bangkok, the streets of Baltimore – or in the hills above Carlingford? It didn’t seem so to Johnnie, or so I’m told.

print by Eoin Mac Lochlainn

There’s more about that exhibition on my website at:

But speaking of prints, there’s a great print exhibition on at the moment in Rathmines Library, curated by Pamela de Brí. It’s a 1916 commemorative project entitled Little Stories Little prints and it presents the work of about fifty printmakers from eight different printmaking studios. The various prints highlight some of the little known stories or events from the time of the Easter Rising.  This travelling exhibition will be seen at various libraries around the country during 2016. More information at:

and my print of Johnnie which was on show in the LP portfolio in the Hunt Museum can now be seen (in real life) at:



art, Cló, printmaking

Printers and Painters – is there a middle ground?

monotype by Eoin Mac Lochlainn

I did some work with Monotypes last year in Cló Ceardlann na ngCnoc and although I’m a painter (and painters and printmakers do not come from the same planet) I actually enjoyed the process and I was reasonably happy with my final results. That’s one of my prints above.

Now, I’m not sure what you think of printmaking but let me say that, for a start, everything comes out backwards! Then there’s acid baths and feathers and soft ground and hard ground and sugarlift and spit and… and… no but hang on: Monotype is different. With Monotype, one can remain relatively calm and produce some quite decent images without, as me sister-in-law might say: “doing your wee head in”. You see, Monotype is a direct and spontaneous form of printmaking, allowing freedom of mark-making and a painterly approach within the discipline of printmaking. To put it in another way – if you’re a painter, it’s quite possible that you might actually like this method of printing.

I did. Who says printers and painters can’t be friends!

And I see now that Anna Marie Savage and Sue Morris are running a short course in Monotype at Cló this July and I’m sure that it’ll be great fun. And there are plenty more courses there this summer too.

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