Gyotaku Impression taken from the Surface of a Crab
Gyotaku Impression taken from the Surface of a Crab
Gyotaku Impression taken from the Surface of a Crab
Gyotaku Impression taken from the Surface of a Crab
Gyotaku Impression taken from the Surface of a Crab
Gyotaku Impression taken from the Surface of a Crab
  • Load image into Gallery viewer, Gyotaku Impression taken from the Surface of a Crab
  • Load image into Gallery viewer, Gyotaku Impression taken from the Surface of a Crab
  • Load image into Gallery viewer, Gyotaku Impression taken from the Surface of a Crab
  • Load image into Gallery viewer, Gyotaku Impression taken from the Surface of a Crab
  • Load image into Gallery viewer, Gyotaku Impression taken from the Surface of a Crab
  • Load image into Gallery viewer, Gyotaku Impression taken from the Surface of a Crab

Gyotaku Impression taken from the Surface of a Crab

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Gyo = Fish and Taku=Rubbing. Essentially my work is all based on this technique but I have extended it to include other subjects as many practitioners of Gyotaku do. Here I have use the technique on an Anglesey crab. With it's hard shell and and hairy legs, it make a challenging subject for this technique. Ink is applied to the surface of the crab and then I have printed it onto a thin sheet of paper. In this instance it's a Chinese Mulberry paper. This paper is strong, a flexible so works well on such a subject. The ink I used was a high quality, light fast and permanent acrylic screen printing ink. This is not the traditional ink for this art form, but I find it works very well as it's very stable during the wet mounting process. What is wet mounting? I hear you ask. Well when the print has been made, the paper will be very wrinkled from being stretched across the surface of a three dimensional object. Before the print is suitable for framing it much be flattened. I do this using the Urauchi method. This is the traditional Japanese method for bonding paper together. The print must be laid face down on a flat surface and a glue which I make myself from flour and water is applied all over the back of the print. As the glue is applied, all the air bubbles, lumps and bumps are removed from the paper. I then lay a thicker sheet of paper over the back of the print and press the two together using a palm fiber brush known as a Shuro. The two sheets of paper are left to dry for around 24 hours and during this time they bond together. This leaves you with a perfectly flat, thicker sheet of paper and the resulting print can now be framed.