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Behind the print: "Supermarket Pineapples"

Carolyn Fuller talks about her vibrant series of pineapple prints, which she is showing as part of her featured artist exhibition at Greenwich Printmakers.

Yellow and blue pineapple print by Carolyn Fuller
"Supermarket Pineapples" by Carolyn Fuller

Why did you decide to make this series of prints? What is it about pineapples that interests you?

I have worked on images of pineapples before – they have appeared in several etchings and a previous pineapple print called "Holiday Pineapple”. I love to eat pineapple when I'm on holiday.

The main reason why I decided to work on them again was that I saw a full box in the supermarket and they all fitted in neatly, but they were all like people, very different. All six were significantly different to draw, despite appearing to match in the store.

They are also interesting plants. The pineapple plant produces only one fruit in its life cycle, but has an extensive root system to grow a new plant. They are still one of the most affordable luxury fruit. Pineapple cutters work on the same principle as the tunnelling machine for the Elizabeth line.

Exhibition of prints by Carolyn Fuller at Greenwich Printmakers gallery
Carolyn's featured artist show at Greenwich Printmakers

What was the process to develop the idea?

I usually make studies, drawings and photograghs in different settings, and I also collected pineapple items to help with the work. Pineapples are challenging to draw due to their complicated surfaces and patterns.

How did you make these prints?

The prints are made from multiple blocks and stencils using oil-bound printing inks and dyes.

How did you decide on the colours?

I tried out some shapes using dyes. The shapes were taken from the six individual pineapples I created from the vinyl or lino-type sheets. From then it was a case of testing out different colours. The main issue was that too much orange didn't work well. Cooler colours were better.

Colour flower prints by Carolyn Fuller
"Flower Power, Back to the 70s" by Carolyn Fuller

What are you working on at the moment?

I’m about to start on some new landscapes.

Carolyn's featured artist show continues at Greenwich Printmakers until September 18 and her colourful, layered prints are available in the gallery all year round.

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