Saturday, March 28, 2015

No Sweat Printmaking Stations

Can we all agree that printmaking can be messy! Ugh! But the results can be just as wonderful! Wow! 

It's even more wonderful to find a way to make printmaking work in your art class with the least amount of mess. 

Well, I had some teachers ask me how I set up my printing stations that I wrote about in my Japanese Art/Culture post.  

So here it is. If you'd like to see how you can set up a printmaking stations with the least amount of mess, read on!

A  week or  two  before you have  a  printmaking lesson coming  up, you can always  check  to  see  if any  of  the Teacher  Assistants  are available  during that  class time.  Sometimes  you can get lucky and have an extra set of  hands  helping you out. 

This particular time  I  wasn't so lucky, no  TA was available to help me. But I did have an intern  with me this Spring, so he was available to help out. 

While I was working  with kids, at the two printing stations, my intern was working with the other kids in the class on a drawing project.

The Set Up

The table is covered with a  layer of  large style newspapers to keep it clean. But on top of that paper, on my left side;  is a stack of  small tabloid style newspapers. In my case, The New York Post works well. If you don't have any small tabloid style newspapers in your area, you could cut regular size newspaper in half. The fish is put on top of the stack of small newspaper, when the student is ready to ink it.  

I sit on this side of table, the student is sitting where the blue seat is.

To my right of the stack of paper, is the  printing plate, where the roller is loaded up with ink.

The fish is loaded up with ink, on the stack of small newspaper, using the roller. As the fish is being inked,  usually the small newspapers also get covered  with ink. But the  first layer of large newspaper that was put down, isn't touched and it's still keeping the table clean. 

The two print stations

After the print is made, the fish is moved over. Take the ink covered small newspaper and throw it into the waste basket, that you can have placed next to you. The next paper in stack of small newspaper is clean and now ready for a new print to be made  with the next student.

Having the stack of small newspaper under the fish helps you to keep things moving. And it really helps to make clean up go smoothly. By the time everyone is done printing all the dirty, inked papers have already been put in the garbage. You can just throw out the first layer of large newspaper that have been covering the table. All that is left it to clean up the fish and the ink trays.

Would my printmaking stations work for you? What would you differently? You can make a comment below.

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