Nick Richards is a printmaker based at Thames-Side Studios. He is Etching Technician and Course Tutor at Thames-side Print Studio, which offers a panoramic view of the everyday movements on the Thames at Woolwich.
The river runs through Nick's work: watching the ebb and flow of the tide on his daily journeys to the studio, he combines observation with memory and re-imagined motifs. It is the combination of the vernacular and something invented that forms the basis of what he does.
The river is a living thing in a constant state of flux. It's tides reveal glimpses of its past and covers it again, and the sounds along its course point to a time when it was a working river - the voices, machinery, sand ships and river tugs, or the Uber boat powering down the channel.
A multiplicity of etching processes drives Nick's practice. Rather than use hard or soft ground, he will aquatint a plate and bite it. "Because I enjoy the action of the acid I prefer aquatint to mezzotint. I like immersing the plate in the acid and laying on successive aquatint with sugarlift and spit bite, which are both spontaneous techniques" - from Nick Richards in conversation with Louise Cattrell.