More details about the Monoprints of Verna Brady
Verna's Monoprints are unique works of art--- "printed paintings" --- each one is different. They utilize aspects of both printing and painting in a symbiotic statement of great sensitivity. A series developing a particular statement is related by concept, singular by process.
Using brushes and other painting tools plus the inks and rollers used in printmaking, she created an image directly on the plate. First a thick layer of color was rolled onto the plate to create the color-field; then, using a variety of brushes, she painted into the field with other colors and solvents.
When she felt the painting on the plate was complete, and while the ink was still wet, she placed the plate onto the bed of her etching press and covered it with a sheet of 100% rag paper, then blotters and felts. Using great pressure with a hand-operated press, she then would strike a print. When the paper was pulled from the plate, the result would be a perfect impression of the painting which had been on the plate. Only one print would be pulled; the plate would then be erased or repainted and the process repeated to produce a new and different monoprint.
Multiple runs: In developing working methods suitable to her purpose, she came to use plexi plates because their transparency allowed her to have conttol over the development of the image. By inverting the plate over the first run, she could outline on the back with a litho crayon areas needing development. Subsequent runs through the press added "collage" elements in the form of inked cheesecloths, paper, plastic or thread. This multiple-run process was important to her in the gradual development of a richness of textural detail and a sensation of transparency, space and movement. She constantly strove to maintain the feeling of freshness and spontaneity so vital to the monotype.
About this series:
Nature is replete with patterns of movement and energy. These myriad evidences of the Life Force of the Universe strike a chord or response within me whenever I am: looking skyward---percevining the wind movement made manifest in the constantly changing clouds; flying over the land---observing the evidence of uplift and the results of the flow of water and earth so apparent in formations of mountains, canyons, valleys,; flying over water---seeing the everchanging patterns of wind and wave; in canyons or land-cut areas--viewing the incredible movement frozen in layers of twisted and tilted rock; in the desert---witnessing the drama of the wind, sun and shadow changing the forms of the dunes; scuba diving---discovering the patterning of sunlight and water on the ocean floor; in the redwoods---feeling their soaring vertical energy and watching the moving patterns of sunlight and shadow through the foliage . . .
My use of patterns of flowing movement developed intuitively was reflective of my conviction that is is the Subconscious which keeps us in tune with our Universe and its Life Force. The symbols of thought (geometric line and shape) are brought into the statement to testify to my awareness that the big difference between us and all other creatures on Earth--the OTHER half of being Human--is the Thinking Mind. Only Man can make the considered mark or take the considered action! And I feel we are most "whole" AND human when we are using both faculties to the fullest symbiotically.
Purse Seine Series
This first series symbolizing the dochotomy of the Mind seems also to be particularly Nature oriented. The organic flow is expressive of the exciting shadow patterned of the ocean floor created by the sun on the surface of moving water. The geometric structuring of float, vertical line and netting reflect the materials of the seiner operation.
Flower Drum and Princess and the Pauper Series:
My intent in introducing flower shapes is the draw the viewer back and forth through these two states of mind (Conscious/Subconscios) with greater force and, hopefully, awareness made me consider the introduction of more "reality." After trying many images and considering many more, the only one that seemed relevant to both my logical and intuitive minds was the flower. In my search for the "right" flower form the orchid stood out both for its distinctive silhouette and because of my own involvement with growing orchids as a hobby. Only the orchid and the iris stood out distinctive. In searching for flower forms I found the iris, too, stood out from all the rest both because of its distinctive silhouette and also because of memories of my childhood. They grew beside our garage and fscinated me with theor forms and intricasies. I loved to separate the petals and explore their inner spaces. A sudden inspiration made me use both in this series..the orchid, the exotic princess, and the iris, the common garden flower. Who ever gave a bunch of iris... let alone one...as something special? Yet here it was randing with the jungle pricess for rights to the title of most distinctive flower form! The significance struck me as a statement of deeper meaning!