Rubber Stamping: Simple Steps to Create Handmade Prints | Gintare Budvytyte | Skillshare

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Rubber Stamping: Simple Steps to Create Handmade Prints

teacher avatar Gintare Budvytyte, Watercolor Illustrator

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.



    • 2.

      Class Overview


    • 3.

      Finding Perfect Rubber


    • 4.

      Materials Needed


    • 5.

      Sketching Designs


    • 6.

      Transferring Sketch


    • 7.

      Carving With a Scalpel


    • 8.

      Carving With a Carving Tool


    • 9.

      Cleaning the Stamps


    • 10.

      Testing Stamps


    • 11.

      Making Prints and Stickers


    • 12.

      Final Thoughts


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About This Class

This class is going to teach you how to make stamps out of simple rubber. 

This class is perfect for beginners and those that are thinking about dipping their fingers into printmaking. It is something that I have learned at university and honestly I became slightly obsessed with the technique. It is super easy, mega fun and addicatable.

Rubber stamping can make a great addition to your usual medium that you work with, you can use rubber stamps to create your own eco friendly wrapping paper, postcards, stickers and more! It will teach you how to be precise and accurate at carving as you will be working on a small surface. It will also teach you to think simple yet eye catching designs. Creating rubber stamps also teaches you about negative and positive spaces to make your tiny stamp work the best!


Key lessons that we will cover during this class: 

  • Selecting a good rubber: I will show you different types or rubbers and which one is the best one to use.
  • Materials: What we will need to start our rubber stamping journey.
  • Creating designs: How to make eye catching designs.
  • Transferring sketch: How to transfer sketch onto a rubber.
  • Carving with a scalpel: How to use household scalpel to carve stamps.
  • Caving with a carving tool: How to use carving tool to carve stamps.
  • Cleaning rubbers: How to efficiently clean your stamps.
  • Practice stamping: Checking if any stamps need fixing. Creating some compositions.
  • Making handmade prints: Making final handmade prints.

If you would like to introduce rubber stamping to your usual medium or want to create some promotional material or even a thank you note to your customer - this class is exactly what you might need!

At the end of this class you will have a bunch of rubber stamps that you will be able to reuse over and over again! You will also have a nice handmade print. 


I can't wait to see your stamps in the project gallery! 

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Gintare Budvytyte

Watercolor Illustrator


Hello, I'm Gintare and I am an illustrator behind my brand One Tooth Moose. I specialize in watercolor and love working on a large scale. My paintings are full of texture and little details as I absolutely love studying paintings that have lots of texture. 

I recently started focusing on producing short creative process videos of my paintings for my youtube channel and it has become something I absolutely love. 

Since I have found my voice in art I decided it would be amazing if I could teach other people the things that I know and help them out with their artists blocks. I want to share my tips and tricks with everyone and give back a little bit to the community that has tought me so much!

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Level: Beginner

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1. Introduction: My name is Kintala , and I'm an illustrator based in Worcester, United Kingdom. Now I mainly specialize in watercolors, creating this expressive watercolor paintings, but I do also love experimenting with different mediums. I fell in love with rubber stamps back in university. Before that, I never really knew that rubber stamps exist. I only knew a lot about liner cutting. This was a huge eye opening thing for me as I realized I can make a lot of many designs and make them into wrapping paper, art prints, which is DIYing little presents like postcards at an extremely low cost. With this lesson, I want to teach you how to quickly and easily make rubber stamps that you can customize your presents. You can make some art prints, postcards, or maybe making some rubber stamp for your children to play with and create their own stories. This class is targeted for beginners, for those that never done rubber stamping before, they don't know where to start from and what makes a good design, as we will be covering a lot of basics. So if you've never done it before, maybe it's something that you would like to learn. This class is for you. I can promise you that by the end of this class, you will have fallen in love with rubber stamps and might even have a slight addiction to it. Warning, this class might cause some addiction to rubber stamping. By taking this class, you will also deepen your knowledge about negative and positive spaces, and we'll know what makes a good design that really stands out. Have I got you interested? Yeah? Then please do join me in this class and let me teach you a skill that you didn't know you needed. 2. Class Overview: During this project, you will learn how to make stamps out of rubber. Rubber stamps can make a wonderful addition to your usual medium, and it's also a fun way to customize your presents, make some art prints, some promotional material, or some lovely presents for your children. I know I loved making my own story out of stamps when I was a child, so your children will love it too. Making rubber stamps is easy, fun, and addictable. I will show you how to select your perfect rubber so it is easy for you to curve it without having too many problems. We then are going to go through the process of sketching, transferring your sketch into a rubber, and finally carving time. Also, let's not forget about the stamping, the most fun part of it all. Rubber stamping allows you to experiment with negative and positive spaces as that becomes an essential part of creating a good design that works and is easily recognizable. Not only will you be having fun stamping in stamps all over the place, you will also be learning a thing or two about what makes a good and recognizable design. After completing this class, you will have a selection of stamps to use for your promotional material or dear way of present. I really hope you will enjoy this class. I hope to see many wonderful stamps in the project gallery, and most importantly, I hope you're going to have a lot of fun with it. I guess without any further ado, let's get into making stamps and let me teach you a thing or two that I know about them. 3. Finding Perfect Rubber: I will let you in on one little secret. A secret that will let you choose the best rubber possible for your rubber stamping journey. I want this journey to be nice and easy for you. I want to also share what makes a good rubber so you don't go out and buy any rubber possible. There are some rubbers that will work way better than the others and I think you should know how to select a good one. In front of me I have a pile of rubbers, and I will show you now which ones are bad and which ones are good when it comes to rubber stamping. We have these rubbers and they are called gum erasers. They are designed to crumble very easily when you rub your finger across the rubber, they will leave this rubber residue, so you know that they crumble very easily. They are very extremely soft and when you curve them, they do end up breaking very easily. You can break them so easily and the stamp is simply not going to last very long. You won't be able to clean them very efficiently without rubbing off the surface and it's just going to be a waste of money. Now, these are very standard rubber erasers and they're normally used for school. Now, these are not the worst ones. However, you can't use the blue bit at all and quite frankly, the pink part is always a bit too small and again, it's made out of this material that will crumble away. Like you rub your finger against the eraser that and it leaves that residual and this is not exactly what you want. It will be hard to clean these rubbers. Last rubbers, these, I love the most. These are called plastic or vinyl erasers. They're very firm. They don't crumble at all. They're very hard to break. You can easily clean them and they normally do come in pack one or two. They might be slightly more expensive than these erasers where you can crumble them away very easily. However, you can buy very big ones. This one was called for honest stakes, and they do normally cost like a pound or two, but they have extremely large, say, if you want a very big design, these are very good. Or you can just cut it in small rubbers and use them for smaller designs, which is going to be value for money. But these are my favorite one. Sometimes you get some good deals in kiddie section, children's section, and the shop. A lot of the rubbers that have these designs, they are going to be good because they're all going to be the plastic erasers. They are very popular ones, so you can get them in any shop. You can get them online, and it's probably cheaper to buy in bulk or off Amazon. For example, these are got from Punjab and it came as a pack of 10 I think, and they're all different sizes. So if you find the shop that sells these rubbers in bulk, like 10, five, go for it and get yourself a few ones. 4. Materials Needed: Let's quickly cover what materials we will need for this project. For this project we will need a good selection of rubbers. Next, we will need either a carving tool or a scalpel. Let's not forget ink pads, one or two colors will be just fine. You'll also need a soft pencil and a low tack sellotape. Next, you will need a thin loose piece of paper, a smooth thick paper, and some sticky labels, a sketchbook for testing the stand, a household disinfectant, and an old cloth. 5. Sketching Designs: Before you begin sketching, you need to trace the desired rubbers onto a loose piece of paper. We firstly begin our rubber stamps by creating designs of our teapots and teacups. Try to keep it as simple as possible. Now if you wish, you can add some simple marks that decorate your design. Don't forget to add some contrast to your teapots and cups by carefully balancing your dark areas with white. Let's carry on creating more designs in this manner. When designing your stamps, keep in mind about positive and negative spaces. Positive space is best described as the areas in a work of art that are the subjects or areas of interest. White negative space is the area around the subject or areas of interest. Making rubber stamps does teach you about how to apply this to make your rubberstamp work. So don't worry if it is the first time hearing those terms. As you can see, my designs are very simple. Why? Because you are working with such a small space, you want them to be quite simple as it will be easier for you to curve it. You can design straight onto our rubber, but keep in mind that the design will be reversed once you stamp it. That's why I find that more simple sketching everything out on a paper first, especially if you are including some words. The reason why I chose teapots and teacups is that you can literally draw any shapes and sizes and turn them into teapots and cups. I still remember my first time a foxes style, I thought that I had just been taught something amazing, and it was like a little revelation to me as I went into a better at stamping spray. My designs will have one teapot and one teacup matching, and maybe a few random designs. So you can either do the same or just make all of them different for a more funky feeling. I hope that you now have a better idea about how to make designs that work, and that you are now ready for my next lesson, all about how to transfer your beautiful designs onto a rubber. 6. Transferring Sketch : Now that we have our designs ready, we can now start transferring them onto your rubbers. This is a very quick and easy technique. Lineup the correct size rubber to you design. Then carefully holding it in place, flip the paper so the rubber is on your table and you are left with a blank piece of paper in front of you. If you want this part to be easier for you, you can tape that rubber in a place before flipping the paper. Now, just like you used to do with pennies and paper when you were a child, do exactly the same with this. Quickly color the whole space in where the rubber is. Now when you lift the paper, you should be able to see the traces of your design onto a rubber. It is really that simple. Let's do this with the rest of our designs. Just a quick tip for you. If you mess up one of your rubbers while carving it, you can still reuse the same sheet of paper with all of your designs to transfer the same sketch onto a new rubber. It's not just a one-off use, you can still use it a few more times. Here you have all of your rubbers with beautiful designs on them. Let's move on now and start carving them. 7. Carving With a Scalpel: This short tutorial will show you how to carve your rubbers using a scalpel if you don't have a carving tool. You can still make beautiful designs without using a carving tool. Now, you can use either a surgical scalpel, or very but standard scalpel that you buy from any hardware store, supermarket, or a pawn shop. I will be using just a very standard scalpel that I got from my pawn shop. Before you start this lesson, make sure that the tool that you're using is going to be very sharp and not blunt, as a blunt tool will make our life so much harder when it comes to carving rubbers. When carve your rubber with a scalpel, you want to slightly angle your blades, so you angle in straight lines, but draw that a 45-degree angle. You do the same on the other side. If it's your first time of carving a rubber, just take it slow down, don't rush it. You will make less mistakes if you just take your time. Cutting of that angle will create this triangle space underneath your cut and it will allow you to remove that part of the rubber with ease. There will be occasions where on one side you will have to angle your blade straight, and then the other side at an angle. This is more common when trying to carve more intricate details. I normally use scalpels on designs that aren't complex, have a lot of straight lines and don't have a lot of marks in them. When carving your rubber, never ever start carving your rubber with the background. Always leave the background until the very last when all your design in the middle is already done and all you have is the background. The reason behind this is because if you do end up making a mistake inside of your design, if you end up going over the lines out of your design area, you can still rectify the problem if you have the background. But if you don't have the background, and if you accidentally make a mistake, you're not going to be able to rectify the problem, you will just have a gap between the design and the background, and it's not going to be a complete design. Up till this day, I use a scalpel if the design has a lot of white space. It is a very quick way of getting rid of all that space that you don't want, especially if your design is mainly black and you want to remove the background. Sometimes you will have a large negative space to remove and it is easier to remove this negative space by cutting it out by base instead of trying to cut it out in one go just like I'm doing it here. You can starting creating more detailed rubber stamps with a scalpel, it will just take you slightly longer. Let me show you that it is possible. Some rubbers will require more force to carve while others will be softer, but it is always a good practice to use a light hand. When pressing with your scalpel hard onto a rubber, you actually have less control over it and can very easily slip and either hurt yourself or make a mistake with your design. You might find it easier to carve curves if you move your rubber along with a scalpel. If you want to, you can cut off the excess rubber that you didn't actually use to shape your rubber a little bit more, but that's totally optional and up to you. As you can see, you can totally carve rubbers using just a very standard scalpel. You don't actually need a carving tool. It will be slightly harder, sometimes a bit longer than using a carving tool, but is doable, and you don't need to start purchasing extra tools if you don't want to. I hope that this part of this lesson wasn't too complicated for you and you have navigated this for the ears. We will now move on onto our tutorial of how to carve your rubber stamp with a carving tool. Meet me in my next lesson. 8. Carving With a Carving Tool : For this part of the tutorial, I will be using just a very standard carving tool holder with couple of carving tool heads. Select one small one; size 1, and the other one slightly bigger, either size 2 or 3. When using a carving tool, you want to hold it at around 45 degree angle. Just like with a scalpel, you need to use a light hand and gently carve the surface. The heavier the hand, the less control you will have over the carving, and can easily go too deep or scrape outside of the design and into the background. When you're carving the curves, you can move the rubber along with your carving tool making it easier and smoother to curve. I like running the outline on my design with a smaller carving tool height just to be sure to get a smooth outline. Use wider head to carve large negative areas and use a smaller head for details and small negative areas. Carving with a carving tool is easier and quicker than carving with a scalpel as it is designed for this particular purpose. Don't rush, take your time and enjoy the process. Your hand might hurt a lot after a long session of carving, the same goes for your backs. If you feel like you need to take a break, please do. Also when carving, make sure you have a good source of direct light as you don't want to stop [inaudible] your own shadow. You will notice that some rubbers will be softer and will need an even lighter hand than usual as those are very fragile and you can easily make a mistake if you use a heavy hand. This particular rubber I'm carving is really good, however, it is quite soft, making it slightly more tricky to carve. Try to keep the hand that is holding the rubber out of the way of the carving tool to minimize the risk of hurting yourself. I know it might not always be possible especially when working on a tiny surface. In that case, just be a little slower. I don't think that I have met an artist that works with carving that has never hurt himself or herself while carving. I know I have hurt myself countless of times. It is painful, so please be careful. If you have tried carving with a scalpel, you will notice that it is way easier to carve with a carving tool. It is easier to control it, you can carve more intricate designs and it also saves your time. Now that you have all of your stamps ready, it is time I show you how to clean them. 9. Cleaning the Stamps: For cleaning stamps, dedicate a piece of cloth that you aren't precious about. Next uses simple disinfectant. Just spray a few times onto a cloth and start gently dabbing the rubber onto that what patch. You can then gently stroke the stamp with the dry bit of cloth. Repeat that until the color is removed. It is the most boring and tedious part of rubber stamping. But if you want to work with lighter colors or create some nice gradients, it is essential that you clean those rubbers. Don't use too much pressure as you can start rubbing the surface of you rubber. Now we usually store my rubbers in some tupperwares or boxes from takeaway. You can also place a label on top or on the side of your tupperware box and label it with the same that you use for designing your stamps. So in the future you can easily find them instead of going through all these stamps, trying to find the correct ones. You will need to clean your stamps every time you want to use a different color. Just be gentle when cleaning them. 10. Testing Stamps: We have now done the hardest bit of this tutorial, we have learned everything about how to curve a rubber stamp, now we can have a little bit of fun by actually making some beautiful designs, practicing and making beautiful composition. In this quick lesson, we'll quickly check the quality of your rubbers, if anything needs fixing at all, we'll make some beautiful compositions, experiment with the layout and see if we like it. Without any further ado, let's get cracking and let's start creating some nice compositions. Now the fun part begins, when covering your stamp with ink, gently dab it with the ink pad making sure that you cover your stamp evenly. Don't overuse the ink pad too much as you don't want the ink layer to be too thick. Gently place your stamp and press on all the surface with your fingers, making sure that you get all the parts of your stamp onto the paper. Let's repeat the same process on other stamps. During this lesson, we are just testing out if all of our rubbers look good, if anything might need fixing. If you have more than one ink pad, you might want to experiment with different color combinations before making a final print. You can create this beautiful gradient by gently dabbing half of your stamp with one color, and then the other half with another color. Just make sure that your stamp is clean before you do this as you don't want to ruin your ink pads or for the stamps to look muddy. I would suggest you experiment with different layout and compositions to see what works best for you. You can also press smaller stamps onto the ink pad instead of dabbing the ink pad on to the stamp, just be aware that this might cause some fingers staining as you will inevitably going to be touching the ink pad. A quick tip: if you don't want your table to get messy with all of the ink, a good practice would be to place a paper or a newspaper where you are planning to be stamping, as it can be quite messy sometimes. Now that you have practiced with all of your stamps, you created some beautiful compositions and checked if any of the rubbers need fixing, you can start cleaning your stamps and preparing them for printmaking. 11. Making Prints and Stickers: Before you begin stamping, it is a good idea to secure your paper to the surface. I'll use a very low tack sellotape that you can easily peel off without destroying the paper. It also creates this little border and looks more professional. Make sure that your fingers are clean, stamps are cleaned and you can now begin stamping your desired pattern. Sometimes mistakes will happen and you will accidentally move rubber out of place or smudge it on a paper. That's okay, you're still learning. Just start over again if you don't like the mistake. Before I made this video, I have messed up couple of the designs by accidentally smudging a rubber. It still happens to me, it's all good. Now I thought that a teaspoon could also make a good addition to my prone, so I went and quickly carved the little teaspoon. You can do something similar. You can do a teaspoon, maybe a sugar bowl, maybe a bag of tea. You see after I have removed my sellotape, parts of the stamps are missing and it makes it look more professional in that way because it does look like it has been printed by printer not by hand. It creates this little boarder that frames your print nicely. Now, let's move on and maybe do some stickers. For these homemade stickers, I use very standard sticker labels. They're not going to be a water proof, but if you want to decorate your notebook, scrapbook or just add a little bit sticker on your computer. They work perfectly fine, they're just not water proof. Unfortunately, I'm using this sticky labels. Sometimes bigger rubber stamp don't actually fit properly, so I just use smaller ones and skip the very big ones. If my main goal is to create stickers, I will use always smaller rubber stamps for them. Before you start cutting the desired stickers out, it is a good practice to spray some fixative on it. I will just use a very simple hairspray just because I don't want the stickers to actually smudge when I touch them. I'll just quickly show you how good they look when you put them on your desired surface. Here we have your beautiful stickers. Now you can decorate anything you want. 12. Final Thoughts: Guys, that was the end of this quick tutorial. You will now be able to introduce some rubber stamps to your usual medium that you use. You will be able to create some promotional materials, some stamps for your branding, or some present. I'm hyped that I was able to teach you something, that you have taken some knowledge from this lesson, and you will be able to put that knowledge into your future design. I also hope that I made it very easy for you to follow my lesson and you have navigated it with ease. Rubber stamping is still a huge part of my artistic journey, and I really hope that after this lesson, it will become a part of your artistic journey too. Please don't forget to share your experimentations, your rubber stamp designs in the project gallery. Other fellow students and me would love to see what you have created. Let's support each other. It is always exciting to see what you create. If you would like to be the first one to be notified whenever I upload new lesson, then please don't be shy and follow me on Skillshare. I hope that you are now going to be able to go and experiment with rubber stamps a bit more, and make it a part of your artistic journey. With all of that being said, I really hope that I will see you in my next lesson. Bye guys.