for this old dog! Not only is there a new material for lino plates: the Japanese vinyl which is beautifully supple. Today I finished the design I started in class last week.
This was traced the old fashioned way: onto tracing paper which was then reversed and gone over so that the graphite registered on the vinyl. This has the great disadvantage of barely showing on this new material. But all is far from lost: I was told of a miracle product called Tracedown. So when I came to tracing a second design I chose to do so with white Tracedown. I put the Tracedown under the original drawing, and traced through.
The white shows up so well on the blue of the vinyl, and wipes off really easily after cutting, and did not smudge while I was working on it. (Purists among you might be thinking that this design is unsuitable for lino printing, but I'm going to try something experimental with the inking - the exuberance of ignorance!)
I suspect this product is not new, however, because I remember my father on his knees, tracing rabbits onto cut old sheets for my mother to embroider for my baby brother. Those rabbits were commercial patterns which were traced without carbon, and left a clean magenta line on the white cotton sheet. It's just like what I used today, so maybe this old dog was only using even older tricks after all.