Printeractive is Hiring!

We have currently opened 2 posts for Printeractive Interns. Candidates have to be LJMU students from either level 5 or 6. We are looking for students with a particular interest or background in interaction design and printmaking processes.

Among many of the duties involved, the successful applicants will help us design and deliver a series of Printeractive workshops among a wide range of participants, including teenagers, children and adults alike. Furthermore, these interns will be involved in the development of a wide range of exhibits in response to specific collections such as the Leonardo 500 from the Royal Collection Trust currently displayed in over 12 different organisation across the UK. 

Our first workshop will take place at the Walker Gallery at the end of March, and we are expecting to produce very interesting and fun experiments to engage with such audiences. 

Essential Skills

Due to the nature of Printeractive as part of the Design Lab at LJMU as an interdisciplinary endeavour, we expect interns to engage with interaction design and printmaking processes from an interdisciplinary perspective, thus willing to learn both printmaking and making skills as well as the basic scripting languages to produce such interaction outputs.

Although these successful interns will be fully supported and taught the vast majority of skills required, we expect them to be self-motivated and independent learners alike. They will also require good interpersonal skills since they will need to engage in discussions, and workshop deliveries. Finally, we are expecting to deliver such workshops in diverse parts of the UK, thus availability to travel is also required.

Apply Now!

To apply, please go to the LJMU Careers Zone and login with your university username, and search for Printeractive.

This will show you the two posts available. 

If you have any questions, feel free to talk to either Hannah Fray of Javier Pereda at the John Lennon Art and Design Building. We hope this experience will expand your practice and help you develop an understanding of Art and Design beyond the traditional perspective. Finally, we are also aiming to provide you with a wide exposure to artists, designers, printmakers and heritage organisations in the North West of England and the UK.

Printeractive Workshop

Printeractive Workshop at LJMU Arts

On 24th of November we ran an open workshop at the John Lennon School of Art and Design which was sponsored by Bare Conductive. We had participants from a wide range of backgrounds such as Printmaking, Fine Art, Design, Fashion, Makers and Architecture. It was a very intense day, but got loads of positive feedback.

We had two guest speakers. Tracy Hill, who showed us her artwork that aimed gallery visitors to touch her work. She mentioned that it was difficult to foresee how these visitors (users) might engage with her work. Nevertheless, she also mentioned that it is always interesting to find out these different behaviours.

Tracy Hill presenting at Printeractive!

Another guest speaker was Michael Shorter, who showed us loads of examples, even some inks that react with urine! In addition, he showed us a series of integrated circuits where he used conductive ink.

Michael Shorter presenting his interactive music player poster

After their talks, we made a series of circuits that enabled us to interact with them. For this we used S4A, a ‘Scratch’ based programming software to send the data to the Arduino. Using S4A allows people to quickly build interactive circuits to interact with. The main objective to present this was to increase the confidence of the participants when working with our interactive objects. We provided participants with a wide range of inks such as thermochromic, and conductive, as well as other materials such as conductive thread. A very interesting example was by heating the thermochromic ink using the conductive thread. (See below)

So far we have been experimenting with a wide range of conductive inks such as silver based ones from Circuit Scribe, carbon based from Bare Conductive. Showcasing these examples to our participants have been extremely helpful getting us to think beyond how we can produce diverse interactive prints. 

Some of the tutorials presented in the workshop are now available here. Feel free to go through them and let us know if you need any help.

David Armes

David Armes, visited the print studio at LJMU and delivered a workshop and talk to Fine Art students. David is an artist working with print, language and geography. His work is frequently site-specific and considers how sense and experience of place can be represented. David works primarily with letterpress printing on paper. To learn more about David please go to Redplatepress

A Liverpool Bestiary

A Liverpool Bestiary

Groups of esteemed practitioners were asked to respond the ancient theme of a Bestiary and produce a limited edition print as part of a suite of work. Over 50 artists from across the world have contributed to this and The Liverpool Bestiary presentation will allow you to see these prints first hand alongside some relevant pieces from the Galleries collection. A Bestiary is a medieval collection of stories providing physical and allegorical descriptions of real or imaginary animals along with an interpretation of the moral significance each animal was thought to embody.

Although it dealt with the natural world it was never meant to be a scientific text. Some observations may be quite accurate but they are given the same weight as totally fabulous accounts. A great deal of its charm comes from the humour and imagination of the illustrations, painted partly for pleasure but justified as a didactic tool ‘to improve the minds of ordinary people, in such a way that the soul will at least perceive physically things which it has difficulty grasping mentally: that what they have difficulty comprehending with their ears, they will perceive with their eyes’ In all cultures, there have been stories created about creatures. Some of these creatures have been familiar animals like foxes and bears, but often given characteristics that they don’t exhibit in nature (like the ability to talk, perform music, or engage in everyday commerce with humans). But whether the beasts of stories are familiar or exotic, these creations usually were symbolic of human beings or of human traits. Perhaps as a metaphor or as a means to clearly explain a behavior to the listener or reader, the beast served as a tool.

As a result, the way that a beast or monster is depicted (both in illustration and in description) can be revealing of both the people who created the stories and the artists who interpret them and are a reflection of their culture.