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​Meet the Printmaker:

Andy Greenacre – Unruly Print

We were excited to catch up with Andy Greenacre from Unruly Print to find out how he went from being a teacher to running his own printmaking business, the online virtual market he helped set up during lockdown, and to meet some of the Unruly Print team – Dave the Printing Press and Rodney the Roller!

Can you introduce yourself?

Hi, I’m Andy Greenacre, an artist from Suffolk. I work in sculpture, installation, photography and print as Unruly Print. I’m passionate about helping others find and unlock their creative potential and speak about creativity on radio and at events.

 

Describe your style of lino printing?

I’m a self-taught print maker using traditional methods to create modern imagery… a little bit unruly 😊 Everything I make is linked to play and memory.

How and when did you get started in lino printing?

Like many of us printmakers I tried out printing at school, no doubt using a red Essdee brayer/roller and carving tool to create the image of a fish. I used to hang out in the print studio at university (UCLan). This was mainly because they had a coffee machine and the print makers were always a friendly bunch to hang out with. A few years later while on summer holiday from my job as a teacher my wife bought me an Essdee kit and I created my first ‘unruly print’ of a Southwold lighthouse. I sold some of my prints that very week and after attending a few local markets I realised I could use my newfound love of print as a way to leave my job as a teacher, that was nearly 4 years ago.

Cream fabric with green printed leaves
Linoprint of mountains and trees in black and white
Linoprint of mountains and trees in black and white

Why linoprinting?

I love the accessibility of the materials. Using the same materials and equipment that I used as a child and that I taught with as a teacher gives me the freedom to focus on the subject and image. I think customers can identify and remember that printing process from their own childhood too.

 

Where do you work?

I work in the Unruly Print HQ in a studio at the bottom of my garden in sunny Suffolk.

Black and white flower lino print on geometric background
Linoprint of lighthouse

Tell us about your typical day?

We like to go for an early morning walk on the beach and I try to get in the studio by about 8am. I draw, play, experiment and create new work all the time. I have the radio on all day and stop for the Ken Bruce’s Popmaster quiz on BBC Radio 2 every day at 10:30am. I like to spend time in the garden exploring other creative projects and making things. I spend far too much time on Instagram, but this allows me to discuss commissions and prints with my lovely supporters and customers.

What inspires your work?

Memory and play inform nearly all of my prints. Places, objects, toys, stories… anything that I can remember from my childhood… or a suggestion from someone else’s memory.

Cream fabric with green printed leaves

Do you have a favourite print that you have made?

I’m really pleased with my recent ‘Print Totem’ which features the imagery of some Essdee tools and was made using some of these tools too. I’m really pleased with my whole Totem range, it’s a pretty unique niche and I love creating new Totems to add to the range.

Cream fabric with green printed leaves
Linoprint of mountains and trees in black and white
Linoprint of mountains and trees in black and white

What is your greatest achievement?

During lockdown I started Makers Market From Home, running it with fellow maker Alice (@woolandwhiskers) and Lydia (@_lydiamiriam). This online virtual market launched in early 2020 was my positive reaction to the pandemic and the closure of markets that we all faced. Over the year we had the pleasure of helping makers sell work, keep visible and join together in a community of support and collaboration.

Cream fabric with green printed leaves

What are you working on at the moment?

I try and launch new prints all the time and run #makeyourownmojo on Instagram. This is a chance for me to collaborate with a fellow maker and launch a new design or print together.

 

Do you have a favourite Essdee product?

I love the blue soft rubber brayer, so much so that one of the Unruly Print team is Rodney the Roller!

Cream fabric with green printed leaves

Tell us an interesting fact about yourself.

I do lots of radio work and can be heard on BBC Radio Suffolk talking about creativity. I used to hate being recorded and had to get over this fear to become a public speaker. I now love speaking at events, helping others feel encouraged and empowered to find and follow their own creative dreams.

Cream fabric with green printed leaves

Do you have any top tips or advice for other lino printmakers?

Don’t get too hung up on expensive kit, you can start a whole business on a £30 starter kit… I did! 😊

 

Where can we see more of your work?

Instagram is a great starting point if you want to see inside my studio, watch the printing process and meet part of the Unruly Print team… Dave the printing press… he’s the one who makes all the mistakes! You can also chat or ask me any questions here @Unruly_print

 

Where can we buy your prints?

I have an Etsy shop where nearly all of my prints can be found www.unrulyprint.co.uk

Image credits – Photography Andy Greenacre, Unruly Print

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