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Relief Printmaking

RELIEF PRINTMAKING

Ink remains on the surface of the block, or matrix. Whatever is is to remain unprinted is carved away. It is the oldest form of printmaking.

NOTE: Every artist uses techniques that work specifically for him or her. The explanations below are techniques that I have found useful, there are a multitude of other ways to do the same thing. I encourage you to study and find an individualized version that works for you.

Relief Technique:
Wood Block

An image is transferred onto a prepared wooden block. Everything that is not to be printed is carved away using chisels. Ink is applied to the surface of the wood and the wood fibers soak up the ink. Handmade Japanese paper (washi) is then laid across the block and pressed into the paper using a baren (a circular disk make of bamboo leaves and twine.) Multiple colors are achieved by registering and cutting several blocks.

Relief Technique:
Linoleum

An image is transferred or drawn onto a linoleum block. Everything that is not to be printed is carved away using chisels. Ink is applied to the surface of the linoleum. Handmade Japanese paper (washi) is then laid across the block and pressed into the paper using a baren (a circular disk make of bamboo leaves and twine.) Multiple colors are achieved by registering and cutting several blocks or coloring by hand using ink or watercolors.​​​

Relief Technique:
Monotype

A design is drawn in ink or paint on any smooth surface. While the ink or paint is still wet, a piece of paper is laid on top of it and pressure applied, either with a press or by hand.

© 2019 by Erin K. Nolan. www.erinknolan.com

(That's what I like about you, you notice the details!)

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