Jacqueline Lichty spins circular steel tool with carbide powdered grit and water to grind off residual grease image. Sims said it usually takes one to two hours of grinding to completely remove a previous drawing on a limestone block.
"The thing that really struck me was how physical the printer's job can be! Mike Sims said, "There are no overweight Lithographers! Maybe hunchbacked with hernias - but none out of shape!" Ruthie Osa
"I became familiar with the technique of copper plate etching while selling prints to area art galleries in the 1980s. I always wanted to observe the art of lithography. Mike's workshop at Lawrence Lithography provided an excellent survey of the technique, business, and history of lithography. I especially enjoyed his discussion about the chemistry of lithography."
Curtis V. Smith, Professor of Biological Sciences, Kansas City Kansas Community College
See five people making marks on prepared litho stone, two minute video, click Post by Kansas City Print Society."We normally don't associate the term etching with lithograph. But it was the term selected for the step that chemically bonds or stabilizes the grease to the lithographic stone. As Mike said, it molecularly changes the composition of the stone." Robin Gross
Many specific steps take place, including twirling a leather flap to air dry the damp stone, using clean sponges to wet the stone, roll up black ink front ways and side ways, a blur of activity to be sure. Each one necessary to ensure the inked impression be a successful one.
"In the pulling of each print the relationship of water and ink and the building up of the ink helps one see how mastery of printing is developed over time." Robin Gross
2nd close up of details on group impression."Only through hands-on experience can one come to this knowledge. Mike Sims shared a glimpse of the adeptness required for the lithographic process." Robin Gross
More photos can be seen on Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/kansascityprintsociety/photos_stream#!/kansascityprintsociety/photos
Mike Sims helped our group understand the science of grease, and how one learns by experimenting and following charts for etching time.
"Got to learn more about Mr. Sims & how he first came into lithography- His first try at working with the stone came from the tail end of his education in Western Michigan- I see Mr. Sims as a master in his craft- (He would not admit to it http://www.wmich.edu/news/2013/02/1637 " Eric Lehnert
Click on comments to see videos from workshop https://www.facebook.com/kansascityprintsociety/photos_stream#!/photo.php?v=490192084373352&set=vb.246977312092367&type=3&theater
My own notes from workshop follow--
The magic of lithography can happen when a limestone block is chemically altered to hold both grease and water.
Removing the previous grease image can take several hours of grueling grinding and wrist motion. Stone blocks are heavy.
Once the stone is prepared it can receive grease. Grease can be applied in various forms. Waxy pencils, fine tipped pens, bars of grease, and in a liquid form called tusche.
The liquid form can be brushed on in a wash. The trick is to lay it down and not rework it. Scumbling or mushing repeatedly with the brush makes its presentation unpredictable. Best to be direct. And then LEAVE IT ALONE!!!
Two open stones were ready for mark making. Participants played with chunks of grease, pencils of grease, and brushfuls of grease. The group of nine collaborated on each stone. Embellishing it with swoops, swiggles, and if you wrote letters it had to be written down BACKWARDS. Karl Marxhausen