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(Southampton 1872 – 1936 Twickenham)

The Scyther

Elizabeth harvey-Lee

The Scyther
106 x 81 mm
Monochrome brown monotype, c1911.
The image initialled.
Dedicated on the original dark brown mount with a New Year greeting.


To view a higher resolution version of this print, please click this link: The Scyther

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Additional Information about the Print

Butler grew up and received his early art training in New Zealand, returning to England permanently when he was twenty-six.

In 1918 he would be employed as a New Zealand official war artist.

Though not known as a printmaker he experimented at least once with monotype, as in this early image.

Monotype, a planographic process, is the most painterly of all printmaking techniques, for the ink is manipulated by the artist directly on the surface of the plate – the design as it were ‘painted’ on.

The plate (of copper or glass) can be printed by hand pressure, thus not necessarily requiring any specialist printmaking equipment.

In general, by its nature, it yields only a single impression, hence its name. The resultant image retains all the freshness and immediacy of the artist’s sketch but ‘stamped’ with a feel of finish and permanence.

That artists choose to make monotypes, which are unique prints and unlike the other printmaking techniques cannot be editioned, is confirmation that printmaking is not so much about multiplying an image, as the special character of the mark-making a specific technique gives and the quality of an enhanced significance the image receives in being printed.

For more information, and further examples of monotypes and other Planographic forms of printmaking, please explore the Monotype page in the Techniques section of this website.