Long before the invention of laser printers, ink jet printers, or even the dot-matrix printers, artists were able to create copies of their artwork by using a process known as printmaking.

Long before the invention of laser printers, ink jet printers, or even the dot-matrix printers, artists were able to create copies of their artwork by using a process known as printmaking.

Printmaking is a process in which an artist repeatedly transfers an original image from one prepared surface to another. Printmaking techniques are generally divided into the following basic categories: relief, where ink is applied to the original surface of the design; intaglio, where ink is applied beneath the original surface of the design; and stencil, where ink or paint is pressed through a prepared screen.

Students in Roger Darren High’s art I classes at Star City High School recently discovered the art of printmaking.

Each student created a detailed design for a printmaking project using a relief printing process known as linocut. Linocut is a printmaking technique, a variant of woodcut in which a sheet of linoleum is used for the relief surface. A design is cut into the linoleum surface with a sharp knife, V-shaped chisel or gouge, with the raised areas representing a reversal of the parts to show printed. The linoleum sheet is inked with a roller (called a brayer), and then impressed onto paper.

Students carved original designs into the linoleum panels and then printed copies of their designs using a variety of colored inks and papers. Prior to the lesson, students studied the works of artists who worked with printmaking including Andy Warhol, Albrecht Dürer and Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec. The lesson taught students the process of printmaking, proper and safe use of tools, and how to utilize the elements of art and principles of design in order to create original works of art.

The prints created by students currently on exhibit at Star City High School.