Sunday, July 15, 2012

Urban Sketches - printed, matted, framed, and hung!

Sketches by Katherine Tyrrell hung in The Art of Urban Sketching Exhibition at Foyles
Who's made a mark this week is going to be published tomorrow.  I've been a bit busy yesterday and today converting sketches in sketchbooks into prints, matted and framed and then transported from my kitchen floor - see below - to the wall of The Art of Urban Sketching Exhibition which opens at Foyles tomorrow.

Sketches of London by Katherine Tyrrell
for The Art of Urban Sketching Exhibition at Foyles Bookshop
16-22 July 2012
This exhibition is being held this next week - 16-22 July 2012 in The Gallery at Foyles, Third Floor, 113-119 Charing Cross Road. Foyles is an independent bookseller who won the prestigious National Bookseller of the Year 2012.  The Charing Cross store is its original and flagship store.

The exhibition is part of:

Exhibition Poster - in Foyles window fronting Charing Cross Road
There will be a post on Urban Sketchers London with photos of exhibition - including each set of sketches and the correspondent who produced them.

How to produce prints of sketches for an exhibition

Here's the process I used for getting sketches framed for an exhibition
  1. First I selected those pen and ink and coloured pencil sketches which looked like they might read across a room 
  2. I chose two themes - art galleries and a favourite sketching location - Kew Gardens
  3. I scanned or photographed the double page spreads
  4. Then converted the image file into a tiff file (lossless compression) - to improve the quality of the printing.
  5. I produced a printed version of the image on an A4 page of Somerset Enhanced Velvet (which is a matt paper with some tooth)
  6. I had to restate the coloured pencil to get back to the colours and values of the sketches in my sketchbook.  Fortunately the paper is very accepting of coloured pencils
  7. I then matted - using Daler Rowney Mountboard in Antique White - and framed them in frames which were either A3 size or 30cm x 40cm
  8. They were given a glass clean inside and out before my better half applied the brass mirror plates for screwing the works to the wall of the gallery.
  9. Finally many thanks to Nathan Brenville (Tinmouse) who helped me by screwing the frames to the wall. (My right hand doesn't grip too well!)
I'd be interested to know if anybody else has ever tried converting sketchbooks to prints - I'm still umming and erring about the authenticity of the centre fold in my double page spread sketches!

PS Anybody notice the consistent theme to my sketches?


  1. Good luck with the exhibition. I hope to get to see it this week.

  2. YOU are an inspiration - congratulations and thanks for sharing

  3. Congratulations Katherine!!! How exciting and your artwork looks stunning! I have had color prints made at an actual printers where they used a laser printer but they turned out more along the lines of a poster quality. personally I kind of like the look of the center line from the double page spread. If collecting sketchbook art then I would think it would be desired! Beautifully painted and framed, good luck!

    1. Thanks Desiree - I think what I'm going to do in future is make sure my sketches have eliminated as much of the centre fold as possible and then work from there - which is what I generally do in any case.

      I might try a "with" and "without" version on people and see what they think!

  4. I do it all the time, in fact I delivered one only yesterday, most of mine go across two pages also. The center line is all part of the fact that they are sketchbook works. I don't do anything like drawing on top of them tho, the colour correction is quite tricky, often if you up the contrast and the brightness you will find the finished print looks more like the original. I sacrificed a sheet of the special paper to do test prints.
    Have you editioned them and are they for sale, if so what price?
    I bet the exhibition looks wonderful, I love the poster.
    Are any of you on duty to talk about the work to visitors?

    1. Have you got any recommendations re paper. I knew I wanted a matte paper in a good weight.

      Price wise I'm a bit in the dark at the moment. I think if I editioned them I'd do maybe 50 and sign all of them with the edition number.

      We're aiming to pop in during the course of the exhibition. The problem for most of the participants is of course that they have jobs and are at work during the week.

      Having put them up yesterday we realised we needed a bit more about each of us so we've done little blurbs about who we are, the background to our sketching and how to get in touch with us - plus info about the works. I get to go back this morning and put them up!

      We were having visitors yesterday while we were putting it up!

    2. here goes, a bit late I know!
      Paper Hahnemuhle Matt Fine Art smooth, photo rag ultra smooth 305gsm
      or Bockingford inkjet watercolour paper 190gsm
      both archival paper both give great results, I use both, think the colour is best on the first but I like the texture of the second.
      Edition of 50 is the max, sign, title and edition number, I have an A3+ printer so only print as and when needed. Keep good records of editions sold (but you of all people would do that I know)
      Price, I think that your price should always be consistant so work out what you need, time materials etc, add 30% for your tax man then add 92% the final result should be the retail price, if you then end up with some in a gallery (most add 40%+vat, of course it may be more in London)you wont sell yourself short. A limited edition of 50 I think should retail, unframed at about £55, thats an image size of approx 30 x 40cm on A3 paper, more or less according to size.
      Info about artists and exhibition is vital, people want to know and will often contact artists/galleries later to buy, considering purchase time has multiplied by loads these days. A small free image to remind is also good.
      If people who know about the work are there its even better, you can sell loads if you talk to people!
      I know that I am telling you what you already know but it might be of interest to some one reading!
      Hope it goes well and most of all that you enjoy it!

  5. Question Katherine, when scanning, or photographing, your sketchbook pages do you remove them from the sketchbook?
    I find that I am quite intrigued by the concept of the urban sketchers. I must admit that when it comes to making art I've been very much a loner over the years.
    Best wishes for the exhibition.

    Ernest Somers

    1. No - sketches are never removed from a sketchbook. If I do intend to remove them I use a sketchbook where the pages are already perforated.

      I either scan or photograph the pages. If photographing them I clip them on both sides so they lie flat.

      Sometimes when scanning I need to merge two images in panorama format to get the image I want of the double page spread

  6. It looks great from your site, here...I like the information about making choices. I learn so much from your blog, Katherine!

  7. Great work!! Hope its a real success!!!!!


COMMENTS HAVE BEEN SUSPENDED AGAIN due to very silly ignorant people who leave spam comments without realising they have no benefit for them.

Please feel free to comment on my Facebook Page as my blog posts are always posted there (but please note anonymous comments are not published and I block and report spammers to Google and on Facebook)

Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.