Layering paint is a common art-making technique, but Hannah Jensen takes this approach to another level in her creative practice. The New Zealand-based artist uses printmaking techniques like intaglio, etching, and carving to reveal complex designs from boards that are covered with dozens of layers of acrylic paint.
With a background in printmaking and a love for painting, this unique art form felt like a natural next step for Jenson after graduating from university. She begins each piece by applying between 20 and 80 layers of paint onto a wooden board, which contains the full range of colors that will make up the final design. After all of the layers have dried, Jensen uses her tools to carefully scrape away the paint in the desired locations and at the right depth. In this way, she creates varied forms with texture and depth.
Many of Jenson's most striking works feature detailed depictions of flowers and different species of animals. She is able to render a variety of textures by chipping away at the paint with more or less force, which in turn affects the amount of paint revealed from the underlayers. The results of this meticulous process are worth it, however, as each design is so vivid that it appears to pop off the board.