Friday, March 12, 2010

Art I'm Looking At: Teaching Printmaking

During the past six weeks or so, I've been helping the art teacher at the Santa Rosa Charter School for the Arts teach printmaking to the 5th graders. We've looked at techniques ranging from etching to collograph printing to woodblock, to styrofoam and linoleum block printing.

The mini-course is finishing up now, but I've been very impressed with some of the work of these first-time printermakers. It's been a pleasure to watch them become comfortable using cutting tools (only one cut finger so far!) and become expert at rolling out ink and applying it to blocks and plates for printing. They've learned to use the Japanese baren for applying pressure (or at least a cheap plastic version of the baren). They've learned to print, sign, and number an edition, choosing the best impressions for inclusion. I think we may have bred a printmaker or two.... They've been having a lot of fun, and so have I.

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