Adrienne’s striking hand painted prints feature birds, beasts and figures who inhabit imaginary worlds inspired by stories, rhymes or fable. Heavily influenced by her rural Herefordshire upbringing, the animals she encountered there appear in her work as characters from tales making it a very personal interpretation. The prints are in small editions of no more than 25, many of the prints are hand painted making each image unique.
Carborundum Prints – Adrienne has made a special study of carborundum prints. These prints are made by drawing on to a print plate with carborundum powder and shellac varnish. The plates are then inked carefully with etching ink which bonds to the gritty surface, transferring intense colour to the resulting print.
Monoprints – made by overlaying one colour on top of another and often several layers of printing are involved to develop an image.
I apply ink to the surface of a plate using brushes or roller and draw into it with tools or a rag. I revel in the painterly quality of this process, capturing the energy of the mark making and creating a depth of colour.” Adrienne Craddock.
Adrienne Craddock – a personal statement.
I was lucky enough to be brought up in the countryside, an environment that is ingrained in my soul. As a teenager however, I couldn’t wait to leave home, to get away and into a city – to explore my northern family roots, life, people and music.
First I went to Stoke on Trent to do a degree in printmaking 1982-86 and was taught by several fine tutors who encouraged an experimental approach to printmaking. From here I went on to do an MA fine art degree in Manchester 1987 -89 It was a 2 year part time degree and enabled me at the same time to work part time as ‘Artist in school’ for Wigan education authority.
It was here in the classroom with the children that inspired much of my art work. I was, as Picasso said, trying to learn to ‘paint like a child’. Expression without the confines of formality.
Around this time I also thought it best to explore ‘what I knew’ and this is when I began to use animal imagery combined with narrative from stories or rhymes.
I was making work using simple printmaking techniques – collagraph and drypoint (because my studio was in a school) and working on small editions. These works were quite large scale so took a lot of time to print an edition and to hand colour. My most recent work explores the technique of Monoprinting. More akin to painting as these are ‘one off’s’ not editions although it’s possible to make several versions. I am enjoying this painterly, looser and less graphic approach. I am loving the feeling of scraping into the ink and of drawing with a printing roller and applying direct layers of colour.
Having lived in the north – Rossendale Valley and Clitheroe, and incorporating snippets of that northern landscape in my work, I am now looking at the contrast of the lush Herefordshire landscape to which I have returned.
Adrienne Craddock 2019