Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Playing with Prints

This summer, the theme of the library's summer reading program is "Dig into Reading," so my coworkers and I have been dreaming up some appropriate arts and crafts activities.  This week, I played around with some printing ideas using supplies from the grocery store:  styrofoam trays and sliced vegetables.  Above are my practice pieces.  The process is easy enough for even primary grade students.

First, I made a printing plate using a rectangular styrofoam tray from the grocery store.  If you've never done this, it's simple - Start with a well-washed tray (or even a round disposable styrofoam dish).  Cut away the sides of the tray so you have a completely flat surface.  Then draw a design onto the flat styrofoam using a ball point pen, making nice deep grooves.  A simple design works best.  Using a foam brush, paint right over your design plate with a thin layer of paint.  Place paint-side down on a piece of paper (or fabric) and press firmly.  Pull the painted styrofoam away gently to reveal your print.  Of course, it will be the reverse of your original, so you may want to avoid using words (unless you can write backwards!).

Besides "digging" into the styrofoam tray, we used vegetables to make a border design around the styrofoam print.  Can you tell which ones I used?  The round yellow and orange flowers were made with sliced corn on the cob and the magenta centers are from slice jalepeno peppers!  The green "leaves" are from a celery stalk and the large magenta "rosettes" are from the whole head of celery, sliced.  Sliced okra also makes a nice flower-shaped print, which I intend to get when we actually hold the class next month.

These came out so nice, now I want to try it again on fabric and add some stitched or fused details!


norma said...

What a great idea and they look fabulous! They look like they are placemat size. Is that what you'll be making?

Cindy Green said...

That's a nice idea! We were just thinking of a making a picture but they would make a nice placemat!