Meet a member – Paul Walsh

Paul Walsh is an artist who lives in Mirfield and who creates visual and audio art. His visual art has been predominantly digital until he recently started to work in photo lithographic print.

How did you discover printmaking?

As a lover of a variety of artforms my interest in printmaking goes back a long way, to DADA and throughout the 20th Century including POP art and the punk and industrial music scenes. Other than producing cassette covers and gig flyers using letterset and photocopy machine manipulation in the 80’s and 90’s I never got into printmaking. A lack of time, equipment and facilities combined to put it out of reach.
A recent change to my working pattern gave me more free time and I booked onto a one-day Photo lithographic course earlier in the year. Of the WYPW courses available this was the one that appealed to me the most. I use photography in my digital work and it seemed to offer the possibility for the most photo realistic results whilst still having the look and feel of a handmade print.
The course was excellent and, aside from a pandemic related break, I haven’t looked back. Whilst I still consider myself a beginner I am progressing with each session. One of the most interesting and appealing aspects for me is that I am now producing digital artwork specifically with this print process in mind. A new horizon.

What other mediums do you use to explore your art?

I have been creating music for a little over 40 years. This has mostly been experimental electronic and electro-acoustic music. As with print I work in both digital an analog realms. Digital is useful because it allows me to create systems and pieces of music that could not be made in any other way. Using analog synthesisers and effects pedals and so on provides a more tactile artistic experience and similarly has its own unique benefits. When playing live I tend to use purley analog equipment whereas in my home studio I generally use a combination of the two together. Converting images into audio files is an interesting crossover between print and audio work though the results are not universally interesting.
For the curious here are links to two recent releases. The first is fairly noisy electronic music, the second is more contemplative.

What is the most important tool for you as an artist?

I would say it is definitely my laptop. I use GIMP (a shareware application often referred to as a “free alternative to Photoshop” It is that and also better!) to create the vast majority of my visual work. This is largely collage based and includes a lot of pixel level manipulation to merge / mutate different elements.

What are you working on at the moment?

I am just finishing off my entry for the 20:20 Print Exchange. This has been a fantastic, if at times fraught ,and I would like to thank Kate for her support and encouragement here, experience. It has been the first time I have produced a handmade print edition and the first time I have used more than one colour/layer to produce a print.