Paul Smith's workshop. Left: artist David van Nunen signs the print Heliotropic Rainforest. Right: master printmaker, Paul Smith.

Artist testimonials

Art community talks about master printmaker Paul Smith

Artist Arthur Boyd with master printmaker Paul Smith.

Arthur Boyd

Artist

”The work is half yours and half mine.” Arthur told me to place my master printmaker chop (the printmaker’s embossed mark) next to his own signature.

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Artist David Boyd in studio with master printmaker, Paul Smith.

David Boyd

Artist

Paul is very bold. He breaks all the rules and conventions and yet he’s a master printmaker, an expert craftsman, which is the highest accolade you can get.

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Keith-Howard-Artist at the printing press

Keith Howard

Head of Contemporary Printmaking and Research, Rochester Institute of technology, New York

There is no other printmaker in the world who prints like he does. There’s no comparison. Paul has a vision, a certain degree of insanity, verging on genius. He thinks outside the realm of possibilities.

Artist Euan Macleod with master printmaker Paul Smith

Euan Macleod

Artist

Paul Smith pushes printing techniques to their limits to create an exciting artwork in it's own right. It's a process of surprise, chance and risk. His unique talent is the astounding number of colours he uses in each print and his ability to visualise how to separate them onto so many plates. The number of plates used allows for incredible subtlety of colour and tone.

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Artist Salvatore Gerardi talks to master printmaker Paul Smith about his work in the King on William Gallery

Salvatore Gerardi

Artist

The painterly process of a colloblock that Paul Smith has developed enables the artist to build an image through a layered approach by using multiple plates or blocks. This method corresponds directly to my painting practice by building an image using many surface layers. This printmaking approach is the most direct, and suites my intention.

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Artist Criss Canning mixing inks with master printmaker Paul Smith's assistant Dimitri Lihachov

Criss Canning

Artist 

The making of my Collagraph "Banksia Cones and Hakea Pod" was my introduction into the art of printmaking, working with Paul and Dimitri. Wow! Such a lot of work, so complex and so tremendously exciting.

Watching the print develop, each stage bringing you closer to your envisaged final image. I am really happy with this work, the strength of it, and the beauty of the native specimens, which seemed to be perfect for this print process.

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Artist-Camilla-Connolly preparing a colloblock plate with textured gel medium.

Camilla Connolly

Artist 

Paul Smith’s approach to printmaking and the production of collagraphs involving multi-layered colour is one of the most articulate and systematic of printmaking applications I have come across. When working with Paul in the studio, one is working with an original thinker... a quiet master of his medium who is unperturbed by the scene and all that goes with it. This is real printmaking ingenuity at its best...it is ALWAYS the quality of the print that counts. Paul is undoubtedly one of Australia’s very best. 

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Artist Tracy Smith, in studio.

Tracy Smith

Artist 

I have watched Paul work with many artists over the years and was his assistant for some of those but it was a completely different experience to print one of my own works with him. It was at times, challenging, especially as in printmaking you have to think backwards and in mirror images. Paul does this so well and without effort. The resulting print is gutsy and textural and on a completely different scale to my usual work. I have since changed my painting practice to include larger scale works as I really like the way the prints enter a more public realm.

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Artist and assistant printmaker, Dimitri Lihachov, mixing inks in studio.

Dimitri Lihachov

Artist and Assistant Printmaker

I have been working in Paul’s studio for over 7 years. With my prints, rather than Paul calling all the shots, we reversed roles. He left me to make all the decisions. The challenge was to layer all the colours in an order that would look right. In the end I became more bold and loose as I saw the print coming together.

In the last layer I referred back to my icon techniques and made gold ink from mica pigment. I think this deepened the shadows and lifted the warm tones. Making a print from my own work made me realise the complexity of the technique that Paul has developed.

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