Linocut Valentines

Bull City Craft Lino Cut Card

Tell your valentine they’re special with a hand printed card. Linocut is a form of relief printing. The negative space is carved away, leaving the image in relief. The raised image is easy to ink and print by hand.

SIZE: Lino block: 2.75 x 4.5 inches

MATERIALS:

Speedball Speedy-Cut block, 2.75 x 4.5 inches
Speedball lino cutter handle and blades, #1 and #5
Pencils, #2/HB and 4B or softer
Tracing or drawing paper
Blank greeting cards and envelopes
Speedball water based block printing ink (Shown in White and pink mixed from Red, White and Blue)
Rubber brayer
Inking plate, or glass
Baren

NOTES:

Speedy-cut blocks are easier to use and cut than traditional linoleum blocks. Use caution when carving image. Always keep both hands behind blade at all times.

INSTRUCTIONS:

BCC Lino Cut Image

Design

Draw your design on a piece of paper or tracing paper with a #2/HB pencil. Trace over the keep design elements with a 4B or softer pencil.

Lino Valentine 2

Transfer

Turn paper over on top of Speedy-Cut block and rub lightly with your finger or bone folder to transfer image.

Lino Valentine 3

Cut Outlines and Details

With #1 cutter, cut the outlines, then cut details. Work from foreground to background.

Lino Valentine 4

Clear Background

Using #5 cutter in big spaces and #1 cutter in small spaces, clear background. Work from center of area to be cleared toward the edges. Be careful not to over cut outlines.

Lino Valentine 5

Print

Use brayer to ink up linocut block. Ink should have the texture of fine grain leather on ink plate. Too little ink will make the image faint. Too much will fill in fine details and make the image blurry.

With inked block face up, carefully lay card on top.

Using the baren (or another tool such as: finger, second brayer, large spoon, bone folder) gently press the paper onto the wet ink.

Pay close attention to large solid areas which often do not print fully.

Shifting paper or squishing the block will distort the image.

Carefully lift printed card off of block, and set aside to dry. Re-ink and repeat for additional cards.

Helpful Tips

Ink should have the texture of fine grain leather on ink plate. Too little ink will make the image faint. Too much will fill in fine details and make the image blurry.

Pay close attention to large solid areas which often do not print fully. Shifting paper or squishing the block will distort the image.

Clean Up

Wipe ink plate and brayer with paper towel, then wash with water, and towel dry.

To remove ink from block, hold under running water or dab with wet paper towel, then blot dry. Rubbing block may cause small pieces to break off.

Printable pdf file: BCC Lino Cut Valentines

Textures with India Ink & Watercolor

Textures with India Ink and Watercolor

Snowy days and starry nights are close at hand. India ink and watercolor are a favorite combination among mixed-media artists, and it’s easy to see why.

India Ink gives a deep matte finish that is perfect for silhouettes. It’s easy to create quick gesture drawings with a sumi brush, or crisp delicate lines with a nib pen.

MATERIALS:

Fluid, Cold Press Watercolor Paper
Pencil and eraser (opt)
Dr. Ph. Martin’s Bombay India Ink, black
Nib pen
Sumi brush
Watercolor paint
1” wash brush
Table salt

NOTES:

Dr. Ph. Martin’s Bombay India Ink is a lightfast and waterproof pigmented India ink. It holds a fine line without spreading and once dry will not re-wet. This makes it perfect for use with watercolor paint and other wet mediums.

INSTRUCTIONS:

India Ink with brush or pen

Draw

With sumi brush (top tree) or nib pen (bottom tree) make a drawing on watercolor paper. If needed a light sketch can be made in pencil first, then inked over, and any visible pencil marks erased after ink is dry.

Textures with India Ink and Watercolor

Paint

When ink is completely dry, use a brush to wet the paper with clear water, then add watercolor paint to create a background wash. While paper is slightly damp, sprinkle salt and watch your snow (or stars) emerge.

Printable pdf: BCC Textures with India Ink and Watercolor

 

Drawing Basics

I’m currently teaching “Drawing and Painting Food and Flowers for Kids” and this summer I’ll be teaching an adult version at the Durham Arts Council. Yesterday we talked about some drawing basics that can really apply to anything that you want to draw.

First, think about techniques and materials. You can draw a simple contour line drawing with pencil or pen, a shaded drawing with pencil or charcoal, or a color drawing using any combination of colored pencil, markers, or pastels. Color can be flat for a more graphic effect, or layered with shading for a 3D effect. Experiment with materials and techniques to find one that you love.

Drawing Food at Bull City Craft

Next, what to draw? Of course you can get ideas from your memory or imagination, but often it helps to start with a reference. Reference material can include drawings by others, photographs, and drawing from life (the actual objects or people). Copying a drawing is the easiest and best way to learn to draw something–artists have used this method for centuries. After practicing by copying, then you can move on to drawing from photos and from life and develop your own style.

Happy drawing!

Drawing Flowers at Bull City Craft