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Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Thank you to Intern Jaime Durham

 Jaime Durham's test for Gamblin's Sepia relief ink
Interns play important roles at P.R.I.N.T Press; they support every collaboration, exhibition and project that we host. In this essay Jaime Durham (Intern and Printmaking BFA candidate) shares her thoughts about her second semester working at the press: 
"I cannot believe my year at P.R.I.N.T Press is already up. If it is possible, my second semester at P.R.I.N.T Press flew by even faster and was even busier than my first. Time flies when you’re having fun and my experience at P.R.I.N.T has been nothing less than an amazing and fun learning experience. . . 

One of Jaime's hand-carved relief blocks for Gamblin
"The semester started with an amazing opportunity from Gamblin Artists Colors. Gamblin in is the process of making a new line of relief inks and they chose P.R.I.N.T Press among a small handful of presses to test these new inks. For nearly every week of the semester, Gamblin sent P.R.I.N.T a new color. Everyone at P.R.I.N.T would then test the color and record their experience printing with it. Each member had her own kind of matrix so that we could give Gamblin a broad range of feedback. Lari Gibbons experimented with monotypes and a little bit of letterpress, Leigh Garcia tested on linoleum blocks and I did my testing on woodblocks. I consider myself to be one of the slowest relief carvers in the world so having to pump out about a block a week for an entire semester definitely helped me improve my carving skills and speed. The whole experience was great. There is something really special about getting the opportunity to see and use new inks before everyone else. It also allowed me peek into the process of how companies like Gamblin mix and choose the colors of inks that they have.

Jaime hanging work at the Flatbed Print Fair
"In February, P.R.I.N.T Press headed down to Austin for the first annual Flatbed Press Contemporary Print Fair as part of PrintAustin. Before PrintAustin I had never been to any sort of printmaking conference or event outside of school. It was an incredible experience and I learned so much. The first day of the fair was mostly about setting up. I learned how to travel with artwork, how to load and unload artwork from the van to the hotel to the gallery and back again, and how to hang artwork for a small booth display. The second day of the fair was full of people, artwork and demonstrations. 

Jaime at the Vandercook (photo: Tina Weitz Photography)
"As part of the fair, Lari Gibbons prepared a letterpress demonstration in which I got to assist. In the demonstration I printed with a Vandercook letterpress for the first time. After all the work was done I was able to walk around and explore the fair. I got to meet tons of amazing people like Katherine Brimberry and Tina Weitz of Flatbed Press, Jeffrey Dell of Texas State, Matt Bagley of Iron Frog, Carlos Hernandez of Burning Bones, Sang Mi Yoo, Ryan O’Malley and Jason Urban. During my weekend at PrintAustin I got to see amazing artwork from all kinds of different artists and schools, discover new presses, and see what kind of opportunities are out there for printmakers. It was an extremely fun and significant learning experience.

(L – R) Laura Drapac, Leigh Garcia, Kiki Smith, Jaime Durham and Melody Vaughan
"I ended the semester by helping with work on Kiki Smith’s ongoing project at P.R.I.N.T Press. I tore down and calendared paper for proofing. I calendared the paper on an automatic lithograph press, which, once you get the hang of it, is not quite as scary as it seems at first. I hung proofs on the wall for Kiki Smith to view and critique. Finally, I was given the nerve-wracking but outrageously cool task of tearing down the Bon à tirers for Kiki Smith’s editions. The fact that I was given the chance to be even a small part of an artist like Kiki Smith’s process is priceless.

"The last year has taught me so much and opened my eyes to a whole new side of the printmaking world. I will carry everything that I’ve learned from my experiences at P.R.I.N.T Press with me for the rest of my life. There is no doubt in my mind that I have chosen an amazing path for myself and I can’t wait to see what kind of amazing printmaking opportunities the future holds."––Jaime Durham, May 2014