Saturday, March 08, 2008

Printmaking with Youth in the Classroom or Art Program

Release their inner printmaker, incorporate printmaking in your lesson plan or art program for youth. A recycled product that works well and is budget friendly can also be good for the environment. Recycle the wax coated cardboard from empty milk cartons or similar packages, like juice. The material is something you can have your students bring from home to obtain adequate quantities for the class while encouraging recycling. Similar to printing from Styrofoam boards the waxed side of the cardboard will resist water based inks, allowing the artist to select where the ink will hold by scraping or incising lines. Stippling effects are wonderful and can be achieved by pressing the point of pointed object like a pen making a recessed area for ink to hold. Cutting through the wax layer to expose the cardboard beneath will expose the fibers of the cardboard creating wonderfully organic edges and color ranges. Similarly areas within the image can be removed to create large areas of color. Try a multiple color application process normally called selective wiping or a la poupe, by placing different colors in different regions of the print during the wiping process. Where the colors meet blending will occur. This is a simple project with wonderful results. It does require that the plates / waxed cardboard be wiped, practicality would suggest cheesecloth if you don't have a good way to obtain tarlatin. This technique is primarily an intaglio process, but if your inks are of the right consistency color can be rolled onto the raised surfaces after initial wiping of contrasting colors. Try printing with Akua Intaglio Non-toxic inks, with inexpensive Speedball brayers.
Speedball Brayers
Speedball Brayers
Akua Intaglio Inks
Akua Intaglio Inks

4 comments:

denise grier said...

I learned about using juice cartons for printmaking from a German exchange student in my art class about 8 years ago. I am eager to try your suggested intaglio technique.

Anonymous said...

denise grier said...

I learned about using juice cartons for printmaking from a German exchange student in my art class about 8 years ago. I am eager to try your suggested intaglio technique.

Tepi said...

it's great that the newer, less toxic methods and inks are making it easier to safely get kids into different printmaking techniques. akua intaglio inks make me feel like a kid again at times--i think they smell a bit like play-doh!

Alan Takach said...

It really is so exciting to see how excited young students are when presented with printmaking.