The Project

Vedos is a Finnish word for Print. Printmakers as well as photographers use it to mean the finished print worked on paper, but it can also refer to a draft, or a proof print, especially when the word is used by printing technology and press specialists.

That’s what it’s all about in the Project Vedos – making drafts, proofs, and the final prints. We are studying and practising alternative printing processes in photography and printmaking – methods that are mostly historical, some of them almost forgotten, demanding handicraft and printmaking skills. Satakunta University of Applied Sciences, Finnish Ministry of Education and the Finnish Cultural Foundation have provided grants for this project.

On this weblog we will report more or less regularly on our adventures in the wonderful land of alternative printmaking processes. All readers interested in techniques described here are welcome to share their thoughts and join the discussion.

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Jalo Porkkala and Pirkko Holm

Let’s start from who we are. We are artists and teachers working at Satakunta University of Applied Sciences / School of Fine Art Kankaanpää, Finland. The school is a traditional art school, divided into three departments: painting, printmaking, and sculpture. We both work at the printmaking department, teaching graphic techniques, photography, and computer graphics.

We have started Project Vedos with some preliminary studies, where we worked out possibilities to practise and teach historical and alternative printing processes with materials available in Finland, adapted to the present day. There has not been many researches such as this in Finland before, and not many books written on the subject in Finnish – fortunately we have got some of the important international source books at our school library.

We are just starting the first stage of the project, it will be continuing until the end of 2008*. Later on, during the second stage, we plan to publish the results as a detailed working guide of certain alternative processes (and maybe an exhibition too).

Practising these techniques requires understanding the basics of both printmaking and photography, the worker should be familiar with common concepts of graphic arts and sensitometry of photography. These processes are not readily applicable to standard practice of working life, because they aim to uniqueness and singularity, which belong to an artist’s means of expression. Meanwhile, the modern photography techniques reach for effortless and automated control of processes, whereupon the outcome will easily even out and become too standardized. One of the purposes of our exploration is to embolden art students, professional artists and photographers to familiarize themselves with these techniques.

We hope that the know-how gathered by the project will offer opportunities to contentual development of art education and practising the artist’s profession, so that historically valuable information and methods will be brought to hands of artists and art students.

 

*Update on 01 November 2008: The project will be continuing until the end of 2009…

*Another update on 07 January 2009: Continuing with the project until the end of 2010…

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