Border Collie, Beagle, Westie & Schnauzer Prints

I have been busy with more prints in the Dog Tag series based on the most requested breeds from people I meet at shows and online. So here are the next 4 in the series which brings the total to 17 breeds!

Border Collie: Hand printed in a soft blue-grey ink

Border Collie Print

Detail of Border Collie Print Framed Border Collie Print

Beagle: hand-printed in an earthy khaki-brown ink

Beagle Print

Beagle print detail Framed Beagle Print

West Highland White Terrier (Westie): hand printed in a light sky blue ink

Westie print

detail of Westie print Framed Westie Print

Schnauzer: hand-printed in a sophisticated dark grey ink

Schnauzer print

Detail of Schnauzer print Framed Schnauzer print

The next three breeds in the Dog Tag series, to make it to 20, will be ready in the next couple of months and then I’m taking a break form the series for a few months to work on some other printmaking ideas that I have been thinking about. So many ideas and so little time!!

To purchase and find out more about the prints, visit The Enlightened Hound’s website

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Greyhound and Dachshund: New Dog Tag Prints

If you are not familiar with my “Dog Tag” series of prints, these hand lettered prints tell a quirky potted history of a particular breed of dog in the design of a dog tag. They are individually hand printed on my traditional etching press, with hand mixed oil-based inks, then each one is signed by me.

The Greyhound and Dachshund are two of the most requested breeds that people have asked me for at fairs and shows this year, so here they are (just in time for Christmas!)… they join the other 11 breeds in the series.

Dachshund Print

Despite their cute and comical appearance, Dachshunds are incredibly brave little hunting dogs that were bred to chase and flush out badgers.

Often significantly larger and heavier than a dachshund, badgers are a fierce and formidable opponent, yet the tenacious dachshund with its indomitable spirit is a fearless and efficient hunter. Their long, low body is perfect for getting into the dens of rabbit, fox, wild boar, badgers and other burrow dwelling animals that have gone to ground.

The origin of the dachshund is still debated as there are etchings and statues of similar long, low dogs dating back thousands of years, however 16th century German hunters were responsible for selecting and cross breeding dogs to create the dachshund we are familiar with today. The name Dachshund literally means “Badger Dog” in German.

Known affectionately as Sausage Dog, Hot Dog, Doxie, Dashie and Weiner, these adorable and amusing companions are a favourite the world over.

Greyhound Print

At least 4000 years old, the Greyhound is arguably the oldest purebred canine. Combining speed, grace and exceptional hunting ability with loyal and devoted companionship, the greyhound has been used in the sport of coursing (the pursuit of prey by sight instead of scent) since ancient times. It can reach speeds of between 40 and 45mph.

There is plenty of amusing greyhound behaviour terminology to learn. These big-hearted hunters like to alternate between the “Zoomies” (galloping with abandon on winged feet) and the “Snoozies” (lounging and dozing in comfort and warmth). Many delight in hoarding food and toys in their beds where they may practice “Roaching” (rolling onto their back and spreading their legs at odd angles in all directions, like a dead cockroach) and they may also enjoy a spot of “Roo-ing” (singing or howling).

detail of dachshund print detail of greyhound print dachshund print unframed greyhound print unframed  framed dachshund print framed greyhound print

hand mixed ink rolling out ink for printing pulling a print etching press

For more details and to buy (£40 plus shipping, worldwide) please visit The Enlightened Hound’s website

Cocker Spaniel and Springer Spaniel Dog Tag Prints

Here are 2 new additions to The Enlightened Hound’s series of Dog Tag prints which tell the story of a particular breed in a dog tag design. For those of you who are new to this series of prints, you can find out more about how they were developed in an earlier post.

The new breeds in the series are Cocker Spaniel and Springer Spaniel

The spaniel is widely assumed to have originated in Spain, with the word “spaniel” thought to be derived from the old French word “Espaignol” meaning “Spanish”. It may have been the Romans who were responsible for bringing these ‘Dogs of Spain’ to other parts of Europe.
However another theory suggests that the name “spaniel” may come from the French verb “espanir” meaning “to crouch or flatten” (which describes a style of hunting involving crouching and springing).

Springer Spaniel Print Dog Tag print by Debbie Kendall

I always enjoy researching each breed for the dog tag prints. When I spoke to Springer Spaniel owners about their dogs, the most frequent word that they used to describe them was ‘mad’! The next thing they invariably talked about is how they just love to be with you, whatever you are doing and wherever you are going. The phrase ‘Velcro Dog’ (as in ‘sticks to you like Velcro’) also cropped up quite frequently.

Hand lettered Springer Spaniel print by Debbie Kendall

I was delighted to discover that the nickname for the happy little Cocker Spaniel is the “Merry Cocker”
With their soulful eyes it’s easy to see where the phrase “spaniel eyes” (as in “Don’t look at me with those spaniel eyes!”) came from.

Hand printed Cocker Spaniel Dog Tag Art by Debbie Kendall

I was interested to discover how closely Cockers and Springers are related. Originally these were just different names given to pups of the same litter — the smaller ones called Cockers and the larger ones, Springers.

Hand lettered cocker spaniel print by The Enlightened Hound

The prints are hand lettered and illustrated and then each one is printed by hand on my press.

I am using photopolymer plates for these prints which are often used for letterpress work. I like how the image is reverse- embossed on the back of the print after it has been through the press.

Photopolymer plate 'debossing' by The Enlightened Hound

The prints can be bought online from The Enlightened Hound’s shop

Also in the series are Labrador, Whippet and Portuguese Water Dog.

Hand printed, Digital and Giclee Prints Explained

Today, when referring to specifically to artwork, the word ‘print’ is used to describe both digitally reproduced and hand-printed work. It is not always clear to prospective print buyers which process has been used to reproduce the print and the advances and accessibility of digital printing technology has resulted in some confusion.

Please note: I am referring here to the method by which the print has been reproduced or printed — not created. Advances in digital technology and the development of sophisticated design & illustration software means that artists often use digital design and manipulation techniques in the creation of their art. Indeed many artists have even replaced their traditional sketchbooks with a computer! Combining digital elements with traditional printmaking techniques (to make a ‘hybrid’ print) has revealed exciting and limitless possibilities for printmakers today. However a hand-printed print must still have been reproduced by hand.

Handmade Prints

Examples of traditional print-making processes include linocut, woodcut, etching, screen printing, monoprint and collograph.

Creating an original print using one of these processes usually involves many hours in the studio, infinite patience and experience with an array of chemicals, plates and (often ancient) equipment!

 Original hand-made prints are produced from a printing plate which can be cut, etched or constructed by hand or created digitally, or a combination of both.
Lino cut plate  etched printing plate  carved wood printing plate
Inks are then mixed and rolled out by hand and the image is pressed onto paper by hand or passed through a hand-operated press. Each print, although it may be one of a numbered series (or edition) is a unique, original, hand-crafted piece of art.
old etching press  old relief platen press  old bookbinders press

Although the image is the same in an edition of hand-made prints, no two are exactly identical as each one has been individually inked and printed. Slight differences in the amount of ink applied and the pressure on the press make each print unique.

If you look closely at my original hand-made lino-prints you can see differences in texture and sheen between the ink and the paper. The traditional oil based inks I use are slightly raised on the paper and have a soft sheen which contrasts with the velvety matt surface of the paper.

detail of hand printed linocut by debbie kendall

Hand-made prints are an affordable way of owning an original piece of art that is not a digital reproduction.

Digital and Giclee Prints

These are prints that have been reproduced using a sophisticated, professional inkjet printer, from a digital file, onto fine art paper, photographic paper or canvas. They are reproduction prints (copies) which are not considered original works of art and do not fall into the category of printmaking.

Epson-stylus-pro-11880

Giclee prints (pronounced ‘jee-clay —  from a French term meaning to spray or squirt) are archival quality inkjet prints of artwork from a digital file using special lightfast inks. They are perfect for producing high quality, light-fast, affordable copies of original artwork e.g. oil paintings, watercolours or drawings. All the copies will be completely identical.

The quality of colour reproduction of a Giclee print is exceptional, however whilst a Giclee print will give a convincing rendition of texture (for example the peaks and troughs of oil paint on a canvas) a closer look, or touch, will reveal that the texture is an illusion. The only real texture on a Giclee print is that provided by the substrate onto which it is printed (eg canvas, watercolour paper).

When printed onto an archival quality substrate, a Giclee print can last for many years without deteriorating or fading (exactly how many years depends on the quality of the printer, inks and substrate).

Digital prints may be created in several ways:

The image may have been designed and created entirely on a computer using an illustration & design software program.

Artists may have scanned hand drawn sketches into their computer which have been further manipulated digitally.

Original, one-off art can also be scanned at very high resolution to create a digital file. For example, my Quintessentially British print was originally drawn by hand in pen and ink — the only way to make more than one copy (apart from drawing it from scratch again) was to scan the original and reproduce it digitally.