Statement Prints

The objective of this project was to create a graphic image depicting a message in response to political/controversial views. The topic that I chose was LGBTQ+ identification and how it is up to the person to chose how they define themselves and want to be referred to as, not others. For this project, they had to be printed designs using linoleum blocks and printing ink. My image was very focused on including more in the printing and carving than creating more with the hand-manipulation. This project also had to have a final of three perfect prints that were also hand-manipulated. My hand-manipulations were mostly creating backgrounds that wouldn't distract too much from the very graphic image.

To begin this project, I had to first sketch out my design. I knew I wanted to do something involving the gender symbols, or the many different kinds of gender symbols and signs of sexualities that can be shown with them. I also knew that I wanted to have words that could display my idea and message more strongly, the gender and sexuality much bigger to maybe capture attention. And then I included "identity is my choice" to wrap up the idea that a person decides who they want to be. I also really like the set-up because you can interchange the words, if you cover up sexuality and identity, it can say "gender is my choice" or if you cover up gender and identity, it can say "sexuality is my choice", or it can say all three, so I think it can represent many different kinds of people, not only LGBTQ+, but also straight and cisgender people because their gender and sexuality is also a choice. I also included the silhouettes to maybe show a more human side of the message, that these are people doing what they want to do, and trying to live their own lives. It is their job of their brain to chose who they want to be, and it should only be their choice and opinion that matter. They are silhouettes with their chins up a little, standing up for what they believe in.

Carving this linoleum block into how I wanted to look was a little hard, but that was only because my design was a little complicated. But carving didn't even compare to the printing in terms of difficulty. It took me awhile to start getting good prints—I would use too little ink when hand-printing, and too much ink when using the printing press. Also there was many students that wanted to use the printing press, so it was difficult to get a couple from there until I stayed after school and really spent a bit of time with the printing press. I created some pink and blue backgrounds for a hand-manipulation because I wanted to use purple for ink, I thought it would look interesting. I created two different backgrounds, and both of those came out very well I think. Then I chose my best black print and hand-manipulated it by painting a gradient rainbow in the sexuality head, representing the gay pride flag, and then a pink, purple, and blue gradient for male and female, and all genders in between. That print is my favorite because I think the contrast of colors and black and white came out really well.