Moira McTague

My work is based on an intimate observation and response to my surroundings, memories and more recently connecting the present with the past. Working from my studio in rural North Yorkshire I am immersed in the environment and inspired by how I feel connected to the land. This may take the form of intimate insights into the larger landscape, feeling connected by working from life and creating images based on my experience of sometimes seemingly tiny observations.  
Drawing is a very important aspect of my work and plates are sometimes taken out into the countryside to be drawn on. As a printmaker I often work in layers, enjoying the physical, material properties of the medium working in harmony with the ideas. Using many different techniques on one plate is a way of gaining deeper understanding and emotional insight into my ideas. The processes involved in etching allow such development to take place. The three etchings submitted for Flourish Award 2016 are all etchings on copper plate that explore my personal observations and connection to the landscape surrounding me.  
My etchings often take many weeks to make. I have a strong idea of how the final print should look, but the many variables involved in the etching process allow for changes to occur during the development of the plate and I work along with these to create the final image. I am open to working with the sometimes elusive nature of the medium and learning from each print.
Despite working as a printmaker for many years, the processes of making a plate always excite me and the methodical yet challenging printing process never loses its seduction. I never want to become safe in the knowledge of the techniques and processes that I use and am always open to developing new methods. I use both copper and zinc plates in my practice but I am also experimenting with new methods, solar plate, and plate lithography, embracing the possibilities that they offer.