365 Days of Art – Print Making

….days 166, 167, 168

Last week I took a print making class where we used found objects to create interesting textures and designs. We used oil based inks that can be cleaned with water and when we were ready to print we put our pieces through a large press. It was a fun evening and made me want to own my own press.

I made two copies of each print. The second press is called a ghost print because the colours are much lighter than the original print. Since taking the following photos I’ve added more detail to some of these which I will share with you when I’m done.IMG-9486
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Print Making at the Cottage

…..Sunday, July 5, 2015

A few days ago I wrote about stopping in Midland to purchase some tracing paper. On Sunday I took the six sheets that were gifted to me and tore them in half. I now had 12 sheets of paper to experiment with and attempt Lesson 13 from the Year of the Spark. As some of you know I’m taking an on-line course with Carla Sonheim and Lynn Whipple.

This week’s assignment comes from Carla. We’ve been instructed to paint a picture with black acrylic paint onto a piece of plexiglass and then, before it dries lay a piece of tracing paper on top to create a print. After creating several prints we are suppose to lay interesting papers underneath that will show through the tracing paper and add bits of collage to the surface to create a new piece of art. The final step is to photograph the finished piece and then the actual artwork is the photograph.

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Being at the cottage I was somewhat limited with what I could use. My black paint dried pretty quickly and I didn’t have the extender that would have solved that problem. I quickly threw some papers into a bin before I came up here but I was wishing I had added more, especially more of my gelli prints. Having said that I’m pretty pleased with the pieces that I’ve created. I’m thinking that some of these might make interesting cards. What do you think?

Owls, Owls and More Owls (part 1)

…..a real ‘hoot’ of an art lesson

About a month ago I introduced a print making lesson using styrofoam boards. The grades 2 and 3 classes were introduced to a variety of owls and were instructed to sketch several different styles of owl. Then they had to choose their favourite sketch and transfer the pattern onto the styrofoam plate. Once the design was impressed into the foam the children were given water based markers and they filled in the owl shape with lots of colour.

I showed the students a variety of owl prints that I had done using the same pattern but different colours and different papers. Here are some of my examples:

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When the students finished colouring their plates they brought them to me and selected the paper they wanted to print on. I sprayed the paper and wiped off the excess water and then laid the plate on the paper. We used a roller to press the paper down onto the plate and finished off by using our fingers to push on the details like the eyes, beaks and feet to transfer the marker onto the paper.

There was a lot of trial and error but we quickly figured out what worked and what didn’t. Too much water and the colours all ran together, not enough and the print was too faint. A plain solid colour worked better than a busy print but newsprint with text on it was quite effective. The paper that worked best was card stock and water colour paper.

In front of the library I put up a forest of birch trees for our Forest of Reading Book Club and the leaves represent all the books that have been read by the members of the club. I asked each student in my art classes to donate one of their owls to place on the trees.

Stay tuned for part 2 of this lesson. I’ll post that in a day or two.

Print Making With Grade 4

….. each student designed a personal coat of arms

It took awhille to get it right but eventually each student in grade 4 finally experienced success designing their coat of arms, transferring the design onto a plate, inking the plate and pulling a print or two or three.

We applied colour to the plates using two different techniques. The first method involved colouring the plate with water based markers and then applying it to damp watercolour paper. The trick is to make sure that the paper isn’t too wet. The second technique involved rolling water soluble printing ink directly onto the plate and then pressing it onto paper. We used a variety of different papers.

I think they turned out really well. Our next step is to transfer the print onto fabric and then add some embroidery stitches and sew on some embellishments, such as buttons, beads, sequins and ribbon. Stay tuned.

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My Happiness File – Day 9

…. back to work … March Break is over

Some people may think that there isn’t much happiness in going back to work. As much as I loved the time off to rest and spend time with my husband I really do like my job and as soon as I walked through the school doors this morning I was greeted by people that I really care about.

The grade ones who came to see me this morning love being in the library. It makes my job so much easier when they’re enthusiastic about hearing a story and taking out books. It makes me smile when some of them want to do my job and scan the books in and out of the library. Today a small group of them worked very cooperatively together and there was no fighting over who got to use the scanner.

This afternoon I decided to bring my art class to the library. I really wanted to do print making with the six grade fours in the 3/4 class. I need water for this activity and their portable classroom doesn’t have a sink. The library on the other hand does have one in the office and there is a section of floor that is tiled so if ink gets spilled it’s easy to clean up. The grade 3s in that class are still sewing their quilts so they were able to spread out in the library and find a quiet spot to do their stitching. It wasn’t a perfect situation but the grade 4s finally produced  some great prints and the oohs and aahs that came from their mouths when they pulled their plates made the experience worth the effort and the chaos we had to endure. I’ll post some photos of their prints tomorrow.

Finally I got to see the finale of The Biggest Loser tonight. I’m a big fan and I really liked all the contestants this season. It was great seeing how well all the players who had been eliminated early in the game had done at home. Gives me hope in my own weight loss journey.

Cheers!