Monoprinting with the Gelli Plate | Cookie Redding | Skillshare

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Monoprinting with the Gelli Plate

teacher avatar Cookie Redding, Artist, Designer, Teacher

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.

      Monoprinting || Intro


    • 2.

      Monoprinting || Supplies


    • 3.

      Monoprinting || Work Time


    • 4.

      Skillshare || More Techniques!


    • 5.

      Skillshare || Natural Textures & Your Project


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About This Class

Monoprinting with the Gelli Plate is a *great!* way to learn about the beginning steps of printmaking as well as to create exciting, fun, expressive pieces of art.  By using acrylic paint (or water based block printing ink) you will explore drawing and "painterly" styles of monoprinting as well as experiment with textures! After watching the step by step explanations and demonstrations of this fun, fast paced material, you will be creating your own monoprint as the course project!

Have fun and be ready to experiment! Gelli Plate Monoprinting is tons of fun!








Meet Your Teacher

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Cookie Redding

Artist, Designer, Teacher



Good hello!

Welcome to my Skillshare page and channel.  I hope you find your spark of creativity!


My name is Cookie and I'm an artist, designer and maker.  My first work of art was at the tender age of 2 and was found underneath my parent's coffee table* (they were *thrilled* about my creation but luckily realized that I enjoyed making even then and fostered an artistic upbringing for me) 


I have been a professor of art and design since 2000 and love seeing that spark of excitement from students, which I lovingly refer to as the "ah-ha!" moment. I am a firm believer in experimentation, trial and error and practice makes perfect.  Skillshare is a wonderful platform to flex those creative muscles an... See full profile

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1. Monoprinting || Intro: Have you ever been interested in printmaking? That, but feel is, though it's too expensive or time consuming or requires too much equipment, you've probably seen those giant presses and as awesome as cool as they are, they can also be a little bit daunting on your early stages of printmaking. Well, a great way to learn about printmaking is through mono printing, and today we're going to explore amount of printing with jelly pads. Now you can use gelatin with this, but that is a little bit more time consuming and a little bit messy. But with the gently plates, they're inexpensive. Come in. A variety of sizes allow for you to have a freedom of expression within your art and design . So if you wish to learn about the early steps of printmaking, I hope you take this class and I cannot wait to see what you making it. Enjoy 2. Monoprinting || Supplies: and now let us gather our supplies that will need. First, you're gonna need a variety of acrylic paints. I found that pretty much any brand works. Just choose the colors you like. You might want to try some block printing ink. Just make shorts water based and you'll need something to actually spread. The ink out on plexiglass is fine for this in a swell a. Breyer, which will spread the ink into a nice thin layer. Also 50. The £80 paper works great, although watercolors a little bit thicker. I have found that it works really well also, and the gently plates themselves, which can get through Dick Blick or any art supply store. A variety of textures are good to work with as well. These are ones that is found around the house and this art supply store and some natural textural pieces as well. Go on a field trip through your yard or park and find some twigs and sticks that you can use for the natural texture portion of this project. All right, so let's get started. Um, what you're going to need is a couple basic supplies. So in our introduction, I talked about the jelly plate itself. Uh, he's come in a variety of sizes. You can get, I think, three by five. This is a five by 78 by 10 upwards, two more tablets size around 11 by 17. The one thing I'm going to recommend when you get this is keep the plastic. Let me just open this. It's a little wild When you get your plate, it's going to come with two sheets of plastic on it. Keep those and then keep your case. And then that way your plate is always going to stay nice and clean, and it won't get lit and buzz and stuffs around the house stuck to it because it does have a little bit of a stick to it. Eso once you clean it and it's Dr Put Back into this is gonna be really easy for you to store for paper. Pretty much anything goes. I just picked up some really inexpensive sheets of paper from Michael's. This is the drawling. It is a £70 weight, usually around 50. The 80 is the recommended for your weight. The sketch comes in the £50. Um, it's just gonna depend a little bit on what material you're using. If you're using the the sort of liquid style acrylic swift that the thinner, the later paper should be fine. But if you're gonna use the heavier say, ah, the heavy body acrylics or the block printing ink, I would go a little bit heavier so upwards to the 70 and above. Now, I do actually like to use watercolor when I do mind the watercolor paper, that is. And what is this? This is 100 and £40 weight Now does lose a little bit of the details, but it really absorbs the ink. Well, so as usual with my classes, we know what the keyword is going to be. Experiment. If you can get a couple of these pads on sale, they usually do. Ah, you know, 50% sale or a buy one. Get one. Take advantage of that and get a variety of different papers or going to the scrapbook section and grab a couple over there or go to your local art supply store. If you have one in your area and they usually have bins of paper that you can buy by the sheet, try those also, uh, the best thing you can do is just sort of explore and see what it does when you actually do the print on. Then that way, the one that you like, you're going to be able to go out and buy more of that paper later on. But these early stages, you're probably not quite sure. So experiment and try a couple different types. All right, so when you're not using at this, make sure this is all packed up really quick. You can use the sort of more fluid, liquidy style acrylics. Um, the website recommends that you use theocrats licks, but I actually do also use the printmaking. Thanks. Either spine that. Okay, a preface, though, on the block printing ink. Um, if you're using block printing ink first off, make sure it's block printing ink. Um, at the art supply, stores will probably get the smaller ones from speedball. Make sure it's water based. You do not want to have oil based with ease, So as long as you're working with a water based medium, you will be a Okay, um, the heavier bodies you have the goldens that are heavier. The Grumbach er academies the liquid texts A spine for you Guessed it just like the paper. Go ahead, grab a couple and see what they do. So you know, maybe for one of them try it with the sort of cheaper bottles of the acrylic and then work your way up. Um, and with the, you know, just buy a tube of and I'd recommend, like, you know, black white something that has good contrasts. So it depends on what paper type you're working on. And once you see which one you want, then you can go forth into the world and by mawr of that type eso it's really basic to get started. You need the pads, you some paper. I need some ink. And the last piece of equipment you're going to need is the actual printmaking. Breyer, if you're going to be using the block printing ink if you're using the acrylic brushes is fine. Can mix and match you Cambre or some of it. And you can also paintbrush some of it. Mano prints do tend to be very painterly, and it's often referred to as a pooled painting, because when you pull a print, that's what you're doing. so it almost looks like a one off of a painting s so you can use brushes with this also, to actually do your ink. I have a little ink stand here that is years and years old, and it's in pretty bad shape. But you could also use a thin piece of plexiglass. Does something that you're going to be able to put the ink on and then easily clean it off . So real quick jelly paid it plates, the papers, some sort of ink or paint and a Breyer and brush, and then you will be ready to go. 3. Monoprinting || Work Time: All right, so let's get started. After you've wrangled your supplies, gather them around you and we can prepare to create from the paper pad. I have tear. Sorry. Turn off some of the paper and then that way I could just grab it readily and not have to be rooting around for stuff when I'm working and as well, I grab some paper towels because I tend to be a somewhat messy worker. So let's take our jelly plate and we're going to start with the acrylic and just a basic painting drawl technique. Peel off that plastic. Keep it all nice and neat inside. And I will say I am somewhat of a clutter bug when I work. So keeping something really nice and neat is a little bit of a challenge for May. All right, so for this one, we're just going to paint it with acrylic. Now I have the academy here, but you could also use the little you know Maurin expensive. This is the folk art bottles. They work great, have the traditional colors. I have some fluorescent colors. Choose whatever sort of tickles your fancy, and with the acrylic, you can just paint right on top of it. I'm just gonna put little splotches down and actually leave the lid off in case I need to add more later. And I'm just gonna get my paper towel at the ready, just in case, all right? And I like to start with a somewhat damp brush that's not sort of soaking it in. All right away. I will need to add more paint, so let's just go ahead and do that. And this is just try, allow an error. Um, you know, it just go at your own pace with this, and I'm going to go up to the edges with the pain. Um, Monta printing. So let's talk really briefly about what Monta printing actually stands for. So if back in our, you know, English class days and they tell you to break it down to the classifications system Bono one printing. So we have one print, and oftentimes Monta printing is referred to as a pooled painting because they do tend to have a little a bit of, ah, painterly essence to them. But I also feel like they have a sort of drawl early essence to it as well. So it's going to depend on your work style now, bearing in mind acrylic way. All note does dry relatively quickly. Some working with a little bit of speed on that part. I'm going to grab for this one. Just another brush. But I'm gonna actually use, um, the non brush and so that we can actually draw on this. Don't put too much pressure down just enough. Like if you were casually writing something. So what this does, as you can see is lifts up a little bit of that paint so you can draw on it. You can make your marks with it and draw anything you want. The different brushes will date. You know, make different wits. When you are ready, grab your paper. But some people start in the center and fold out, and then some people do a rocking style of laying your paper down. Try the center now First, if you want, try the rocking style. It's going to be up to you, and you can use your Breyer for this part, so I will show it with that. You know, it just evenly puts pressure on your plate. Make sure there's no ink on the Breyer, because obviously we're trying to keep the backs of these is need as we can possibly be. But I have found at this stage your hand pressure works just as well. Make sure you have hit all the corners and the edges. Smooth it over. Go ahead and peel it up. Now, this was just one color. So this is the absolute most basic form off this. You can sometimes pull one more out of this. Now do the middle out so you can see that technique apply. And that usually stand for this stage. So probably standing on end of this video just as a heads up. But I do find that standing gives a lot, you know, more even pressure, cause you're putting its physics, you know, you're putting all of your body of her body weight down on it. So I do like to stand during this. The second pool from this is the ghost pool. Put this out of the way. Three ghost pool is gonna be a lot lighter. And I like to do these for two reasons. One, Sometimes you can get some really fantastic results out of the ghost pool on and also the second it is cleaning up the plate this a little bit to allow you to keep working. I actually quite like that. All right, there we go. So you do get even though its mono printing, you get the one I'll say heavier, more saturated print. And then this ghost print the pieces that I make some of these pieces you were going to make me really thought This is amazing. This is exactly what I wanted. And then the other ones give me, like, I'm not so sure about this. I keep boxes in my studio one boxes like the Oh yes, pile like these air completely right on. No changes are needed. Then I have the f pile like I'm not sure how I feel about this yet, and or, you know, maybe I could do something more with it later. And then I have the third pile, which is the absolute done pile, and then those of ones used for paper making and I can reclaim it, or collages or reprint on top of it. That's the really fun thing with Monta prints with the jelly plates is you can build layer upon layer upon layer with ease. So if you say get a second pool with your ghost print and not quite sure even your 1st 1 you're not quite sure I would. I don't say like, hoard things, but I would sort caution. You just hold onto them for a little bit because sometimes you can get some really amazing layering techniques with the ones you're sort of on the fence with. Obviously, after a certain amount of time, if you still haven't used it, you know, do by all means feel free to get rid of it. But I have had some really surprising pieces come out of those. So I always do caution people, you know, Maybe maybe don't be so quick to throw things away. You can add for the next one. We're going to multiple colors. Let's go ahead. I love my teal Right now we'll that one's empty, so let's not use that. Have the bigger teal. So we're going to make two colors with this one so that you can see this process. This is going to sort of have a Grady in or an ombre effect to it could start from the middle. I really like the golden paints because they and I'm just working right on top of it because it has lifted enough of that up. The golden paint has a really nice pigmentation to it. No, I'm just gonna go pretty quickly with this and we're going to do the exact same system we're gonna pull from this, and it's just gonna be with the brush. And this is just more lying art style Monta printing the next one we're gonna do, we're gonna make a sort of picture with it so you can see what all you can do with this. Here's here's the trick With Monta printing, the only limitation is your imagination. So you know, if you're running out of ideas, just look around a little bit and then you'll be able to pull from new Resource is I feel like this one wants to be leaves, so I'm going to make a grouping of symbolically drawn leaves. Maybe some circles. That's not too bad. So, yes, you're working kind of quickly with this, but they do have a really gestural feel to this. So we have that Go ahead, lay it down. So one color. Many colors layer upon layer. You can get some really fantastic results with these. All right, make sure those edges are gone over and pool. All right. Hey, not too shabby. The colors. You can so much fun with the colors. So be ready to explore and experiment and sort of see where they had. Let's pool with the ghost. Let's use the ghost print and use that we just did. And let's get a two for one just so you can see how the layering works with that and again , you can use your Breyer. If you feel like you need a little bit more pressure on that, go for it. And the great thing is with these, you know, if you're just continually Unsteadily working on these, you don't have to clean the jelly. You don't want it to really dry out. But you do have a pretty long working period with that, and this is what I'm talking about. You can get some really awesome layering effects with E. So this was a ghost with a ghost, and we're getting the sort of spirals I call them, the ribbons at my serious. If you follow me on instagram, you see the ribbons. Quite a bit the ribbons and then the leaf overlay. And we have something that maybe been initially rather mediocre, but now is quite interesting. All right, so for to wrap up this section, just try layering one color couple colors and just drawling loosely into it and making a couple pools. Experiment with the ghosts experiment, laying ghost upon ghost, even ghost upon the normal just to see how they interact again. The key of this class is playing experimentations. It starts right now. So grab your paints, grab your brushes and go ahead and go to town with the first stage of Monta printing. 4. Skillshare || More Techniques!: all right. Now for the more painterly style for this, I'm just going Teoh, Let's just work with sort of abstraction. No, grab some of the same colors. So if you are more painter style of artist, um, translate your techniques onto this and then see how they work, you know? Are you a figure painter? Are you landscape artist? These translate really well on the prince. So let's see the more painterly side of things. And I'm gonna work a little bit more looser. Ah, a little bit more expressive. The Siri's that I'm doing now with my paintings are more floral, organic, So I'm going to use that technique with it, and they are a little bit more expressive and abstract. And I'm just going to try to sneak in all sorts of colors just to see how they interact with this. Ah, one thing you can do if you're on the design side of the art spectrum is I use the's a lot of times even that the good bad and the ugly isas are called them the ones that keep aside . Sometimes those textures look amazing in the back of a design or as a burst or a header, etcetera. So, again, I know it makes me sound like a little bit of a material slash paper hoarder, But I do keep a little bit of everything because I have found they come in handy. So my current painting, Siri's the under paintings have a tendency to look like this exact same thing. Go ahead, lay it down and I'm a slide. This my table is a little bit wobbly, so it doesn't The water cups low full out. Right. So however you paint, see how it translates with the jelly pass. And again you can keep building layer upon layer. Just set them aside so they can have a little bit of dry time. Um, and then you can see how your paintings voila, are going to translate to the jelly plate. Really? So cool. Eso again? If you're a designer, how could you use this? You know, in a poster design or as a texture in a background or over laid with type etcetera. You could do some really fantastic things with this. Let's go ahead. Pull that ghost waste not, want not. And then that way, maybe the ghost will come in handy. later. Now I did have to call it a little bit more Group e er style paint on there. So it is going to be textured on that original pool. But sometimes I do like that with these eso, you can have a little bit of fun with textures as well. With these all right and ghost so you can see the two extremes. Let's put them up sort of side by side. They look really interesting alone and together. It sort of works well as a Siri's. And if you don't clean this, it'll build up the layer for the next one. Ah, real quick note, sort of a side four printmaking in general, which is one of those things that I think the sort trickiest to get used to in the early stages of it is whatever you're creating, whatever you're laying down, it's going to be the reverse. So if you want it to look like this, you're actually going to get the reverse of it. So if you're working with, say words in these pieces, do not write the words like you normally would. You're going to have to write them backwards. So if you want to do that right on a cheap piece of computer paper, turn it over, put it on a window, and then you can have something to prefer to. So you can make sure you're doing the wording right. Otherwise, it's funny backwards. That being said, I promise you, every printmaker and every printmakers student at one point or another another have done that by accident. So don't beat yourself up. If you'd write backwards just backburner, the everything is gonna be flipped with this. All right, so for this section, try working a little bit more pain, tree away with it, pull a couple. And if you've taken my drawing class here in skill share, you know my number by now 3 to 5 to try 3 to 5 of these. Just see how they work. And make sure you pull the ghost with these as well. 5. Skillshare || Natural Textures & Your Project: All right, so let's get started on the banks. So we've been working with the acrylics for now. We're going to switch gears a little bit, and it's going to be more of the traditional pin printmaking style. I'm going to use black block printing ink. And for this, there is a really distinctive sound that you're going to listen to whatever you put your ink on the banking area. So if you're using these, usually come as a kit in Dick Blick or Amazon, etcetera. Wherever you're buying your art supplies in my main studio, I actually have this. A nice giant slab of plexiglass I find that works really well. Also, you know, glass in general. Just be careful. It is glass if you're not using plexiglass. So for this, whenever you get started, a little goes a long way. So don't be. Don't scrimp on the bank, but at the same time don't. But don't lob it out because too much is too much with this. So I when I'm teaching the thinking stage, you know, put a couple dots down, you can put them in a row if you want. That's fine, but you don't want to do not just leave the lid open in case anymore. It's the same as when we were painting. It's better to add. It's going to be a lot harder to subtract now. The trick With using a Breyer, we have a tendency to want to just go rock it back and forth, back and forth. But if we're doing that, it's only getting ink on half of the roller. So you're gonna want to get a full rotation, pick it up and keep getting that full rotation. Now, sometimes towards the end, you'll see people doing that, and that's fine. But towards the beginning, you want a floor irritation so that it actually picks up evenly. So full rotation. You can see how it sort of multiplying full rotation and you lift pickup lift pickups. Now you can change the direction so it spreads that ink out, and you can see how the ANC is spreading onto the plate. Mince evening out. You're going to hear this noise, and I'm gonna be quiet for one second. Actually, put the microphone closer to it. All right. That's called charging. So you're charging the ink, and if you want to make an association with it. It sounds like a static charge, so that's that sound. It's sort sounds like a velvety noise, and it's hard explained. But once, if you're using the ANC, once you get to that consistency, it's going to sound like a sort of static. That's charged, Inc That is what you're going to look for, and it almost looks like a nice, soft velvet. Um, and I didn't clean this. So we're going to experiment. You can also Inc it on the play, or you can put the ANC down. I'll show that also, Um, since this is the first go of it, I think I might do that. That sets a little bit. Slurpee er with the ankle is not a professional term. Um, in my classes, I like to make up words, so get used to it. Um, then that way it's, um, or even placement on it. From there. You can just keep refreshing your ink with that message. Also, if you don't want Teoh commit to the jelly, playing on the jelly plate does have a really nice pick up with it. A lot of printmakers with mono printing, and that's that back and forth because we're getting, you know, a pretty nice coat. So I felt comfortable enough to do that there, right there. We can do it again. You could just use plexiglass. It's not gonna have the same absorb. Sorry, absorbency rate, but you are going Teoh. Be able to use it as a surface. It's a little bit harder to clean, but if you, you know, don't want to spend a couple bucks on the use, try it. If there's plexiglass hanging around a note on braiders, never store Breyer down. Always store them up. That's why they have that little lying here. If you lay it down the surface pressure of the table actually flatten it. You're going to get an uneven roll with this, all right, so let's do something slightly different. We had some of our little collage de style or sorry texturally bits. So let's make more of a collage style, Um, so it's really cool with the gel plates is you know you can have a source sticky or surface for them to work on. I have some oil. Please. Let's lay those down. Oh, so pretty. Let's do three. Three is always a good number. Actually, I'm going to replace that one because I have ink on me, and I don't want it to be on that. All right, that's looking pretty good. And maybe I'll put a little bit of string and I actually don't have scissors, so I'm just gonna let the string hanging over the side string chords, yarns, etcetera. Just to get a little bit of line going through this, make a little bit more visual interest. The attack. That's kind of nice. Attack in the place on Go ahead and pick up a new piece of paper. Or you can use one of the ghost Prince if you wanted to work in a more layering style and I'm going to stand up and apply a nice pressure to it. You want a pretty solid pressure with this, uh, again, Breyer is you can work with. That's fine, but I find this works just as well. I do have stuff on my hands. It is going to get a little messy on when we pulled up. You can see it actually grabs the textural inlays in this piece. So if you had something underneath, or even if you spray painted the paper. You can see sort of the layers through each other. So you gassed it. We're going to get the ghost also setting those aside and again the middle. Great. They look awful. Who knows? Let's find out. We're going to explore and play. It's fun to play again. I think that's something that we forget about. And I do make it a daily practice to just do a little bit of doodling and goofy, kind of goofing off. Grab some of these things and just relax and have fun with it. Just play. If it works great, it doesn't work great. Who knows until you try, All right, Feeling confident with this? Let's go ahead and peel it up. And usually the ghost with these air a little bit different because they're going to pick up the texture of the Doyle's or yard or whatever a little bit differently. Eso If you like it awesome. If not, put in that pile of maybe work with later on and see what you can do with it. So for the next bit did the exact same thing. Get a little bit more of that ink on there and we're going to use natural objects. So twigs, branches for hours, etcetera, Uh, something that you can find in the yard or the park nearby. Your house clients. Let's see what happens. And I'm gonna use a ghosting for this one so that we get a little bit of visual variety and layering with this while I'm thinking this, I'm gonna talk about your final project for this, And I do want to see lots of experiments. So show me some of your process Share with others what you're doing. What materials have you gathered, or did you like the pain or did you like the ink Better? Um, talk us through what? You experimented with what you explored. I think that is the best part of skill. Share is just the community that's involved with it. So I love seeing what everyone makes with it. All right. I just needed a little bit more there on the edge. All right, so we're gonna the exact same thing, but we're going to grab some of our natural elements, and I love I found the think of vines, which I have a plethora of thes in my yard. So I just did a little walk around. We're gonna put two of the think of vines in maybe something like this, and you can sort of arrangements that whenever you are going to be thinking them, you know you're going to get some of that shape. Let's see what the pine does. I've never used Pine and E did bring this guy in because I wanted to talk about it. Anything that has little feathery bits like the grasses will work, but you will have to clean your plate instantly. You can't even really get a ghost with them because the little seed pods will embed themselves into the gel suggest. Be cautious with that some leaves. I'm just gonna throw all sorts of things down. And then let's see what happens. And a little bit of Pompa grass. Oh my gosh, it's chaos. Let's see what happens. Let's grab. No, no, I sort of liked what was happening with the ghost print of this. So I'm thinking that the pinks in the yellows and greens, a little bit of blue traces could be really awesome, with contrast that I'm seeing here. So a really strong black velvety Inc against these sort of neon palettes. So let's find out. Play it down. I am going to stand and same DeLeo as before. Just do the same even pressure on and these are a little bit bumpier. So you know you're going to get some more nooks and crannies that you're gonna have to deal with going edge to edge, side the side and get a nice even pressure on it. All right, that feels good. Ah, that's awesome. All right, so here are the natural objects I will confess. The natural ones have always tended to been my personal favorite for my work. But I have seen people do some amazing stuff with the Doyle ease and mandate textures. And actually did they found, like, scrapbook paper. Michael's ahead stenciling on it to try stencils. That works, But this is really fun just to see what the two layers do. So for your final, what I'm going to recommend is that you explore layering with ease, so I'm going to recommend something you know, vivid or light ish in the backgrounds, lots of textures and choosing either the man made textures or the natural textures build the contrast On top of it. One is all that's required. But I will, as always, recommend the more the merrier thes were great and Siri's and Plus, if you have everything already set up and you're gonna have to clean it anyway, go ahead. Go ahead, make 50 of these if you want, and then choose the one that you like most. But the end goal is to make one monitor print to share with everyone, Um, and just have fun and see what everything does together. And don't forget the ghosting. So let's pull one more ghosting before we leave. But again, I would love to see your process behind this. Since everyone lives in different regions, what leaves around your area? What grasses and vines, etcetera, What can you find? And I did that if some of the stuff came from my junk drawer in my studio. What do you have laying around the house that you can use? Um, you know, do a field trip. It Michaels, if you have a great coupon and see what sort of textural items you can find in the dollar bin, Um, one thing I've not tried but I've been curious about was even something like rubber stamps , you know? Does that pool a texture out of it? Why not experiment? See what happens. Apply that pressure. Get that ghost friend. Voila! A natural print thanks to our gelt late so you can use the gelatin if you want. Teoh, use a different You know, I'll say traditional method of it. But these gently plates were Khoury and they're so easy to clean. And you could have a lot of fun and be really expressive with them. So I can't wait to see what you can do with your jelly plates. And with mono printing, even though it's just one print, you sort of get too out of it. Thanks to our ghost image. So layer, explore, experiment and share with us your printmaking journey. I hope you enjoy the class. Have a great day.