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Print-making has featured in many projects I’ve worked on and in the things I make myself. I love to explore layers of colours and textures and to overlap and combine different effects.
With children I often use different kinds of mono-printing, relief-printing and print-blocks, usually with a range of water-based inks and paints.
I've been exploring print-making in my own work for years and have really been focusing on this is recent months. I belong to the Sherwood Printmakers group in Nottingham - a really lovely group which holds exhibitions, artists craft fairs and is part of a thriving artists community in that part of Nottingham.
I've recently been working a lot with lino-cuts, collagraphs, gum-Arabic lithography and mono-prints; experimenting with images inspired by the natural world around me and vintage books about nature.
There’s a real sense of excitement and discovery in uncovering prints as you create them and the different effects produced can be quite unexpected and magical.
Again, as with many other processes I use, I think the very absorbing, hands-on. tactile nature of printing is crucial for children - and can get lost amidst modern technology and a desire for environments free of perceived mess. Print-making also engages a sense of science in colour mixing and in the tactile consistency of the inks. Because images are frequently worked in reverse, it engages different
aspects of the brain as children compose and frame their ideas; this can be especially interesting when working with text.
Print-making can enable the same pattern to appear again and again and for images to be re-worked many times. You can test out your ideas in many different colours and children will often combine
images they have designed with images from others, so you can create beautiful joint pieces of work.