Newcastle Printmakers Workshop

I visited the Newcastle Printmakers Workshop in the late afternoon of Friday 13th Feb after a long-ish but very scenic drive from Coffs Harbour. The workshop is situated opposite parklands in a lovely tree-lined street in a residential suburb of Newcastle. The building is newly refurbished after a significant grant gained in 2013 (and, for the moment, you can see the old building on Google maps street view which only serves to underline how well the external renovations were undertaken),


complete with the group’s new logo on the street facing wall.

I was fortunate that three members wanted to meet with me – Gina McDonald, Amanda Donohue and Helene Leane – but when we all arrived, Robyn Culley, another member, was working on one of her own prints for a forthcoming show. Below are pictured Amanda, Robyn, Gina and Helene:


standing over a couple of Robyn’s proofs, which we’d all been discussing earlier. They were for a show all are involved with, one in which members have visited a local vineyard and produced work based on their impressions. The NPW blog has an entry on this here. Here Helene examines prints by another member in the drying rack for the same show:


The walls are filled with works by members from earlier shows.

I was shown around the premises and the NPW facilities. They have a couple of etching presses and a lithography one along with the usual baths etc:


The facilities are better described on their website here.

The group sell their prints at a stall at a local bazaar, which I thought a good idea; here the banner with the new logo they’d printed for this stall can be seen in front of the group’s library:


I was given a copy of the NPW’s book about the 35 years of operating as an open access printmaking workshop: this will take pride of place in the Leicester Print Workshop’s library along with others I’ve been given on my journey.

We spent a long time talking about how such workshops can keep going, how to raise and seek out funding, and how the creative enterprise can be maintained. I’m pretty sure that it is only by all of us sharing our experiences that we can help each other to keep going.

I’d like to thank  Gina, Amanda, Helene and Robyn for making me welcome (and later over tea with Helene and Gina in Helene’s lovely home). I had a great time and the visit has prompted me to try to think of ways that open access studios might collaborate more.

Posted on February 17, 2015, in Aus2015, Printmaking and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 7 Comments.

  1. Hi Tony, it was great to meet you when you visited Newcastle. The discussion about the funding model you have in Leicester was interesting and certainly gave us things to think about. I know that we are very jealous of your paid staff, our being run purely on volunteers. Hope you enjoy the rest of your trip and print workshop visits. Regards Amanda

  2. What a wonderful journey through the land of “printmaking workshops”. Your visit has certainly made us reflect on the world wide printmaking community and how we can become a greater link in this chain. Many thanks Tony, Helene

  3. Hi Tony,
    Your name came up at a recent meeting regarding the possibility of Newcastle Printmakers Workshop doing an exchange with the Leicester Print Workshop. Do you have any thoughts on this as we would love to know what you think the possibilities might be – perhaps for late 2016. I hope things are going well with you,


    • Hi Gina, great to hear from you. Hope all is well at Newcastle Printmakers. I’ve just finished printing my first ever edition, an entry to the 20:20 print exchange (
      I’ll pass your suggestion on to Lucy Phillips, the director of LPW: do you have an email address she can use? 2016 is the year of our 30th anniversary so a lot of events are already planned. The major event will be smallprint:2016 (see and we are hoping for a lot of entries from the workshops I visited in Australia. I’ll let you know as soon as it is officially announced.
      Please do bear in mind that we are shortly to close for Our Big Move ( to new premises and things are pretty manic at the moment so Lucy may not be able to get in touch for a while.
      All the best,

      • Hi Tony,

        Thank you for your reply and letting me know about your small print 2016. We are hoping to do something that involves another print studio but we are not really there yet. I will carbon copy Amanda into this email too as the workshop is looking into making a plan for the future exhibitions/exchanges. Lucy can find me at We had a 35 year anniversary last year and think we are the oldest community run printmaking workshop in Aus. We look forward to hearing from you down the track. Please send me the info about the small print 2016 so I can send it out to our members,

        Best regards,


        PS. Can you send me your email address too.


      • Hi Gina. Congratulations on last year’s anniversary. I’ve emailed Lucy with your address. My email address is

  1. Pingback: Visit to NPW by Tony Linde from Leicester Print Workshop | Newcastle Printmakers Workshop

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