Printmaking at Home: Creating Linocut Patterns | Evgeniya & Dominic Righini-Brand | Skillshare

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Printmaking at Home: Creating Linocut Patterns

teacher avatar Evgeniya & Dominic Righini-Brand, Graphic Design & Photography

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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.

      Introduction & Overview


    • 2.

      What is Linocut


    • 3.

      Materials & Tools


    • 4.

      Making Marks


    • 5.

      Printing Linocut Patterns


    • 6.

      Using Your Patterns & Conclusion


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About This Class

Linocut is a really easy hand-printing technique you can use to create your own wrapping paper, handmade wallpaper, art prints, gift cards and presents for the festive season. This class will give you the opportunity to design and create wonderful handmade patterns and illustrations at home without needing to draw sophisticated elements first!

I am Dominic from Attitude Creative, and in this class I will be sharing how to create you own handmade linocut patterns and print them at home using equipment usually found in your kitchen. 

In this class you will learn:

  • what tools, materials and equipment you need to create homemade linocut patterns;
  • how to carve artists lino and create different marks, patterns and textures;
  • basic printmaking techniques in a home environment;
  • how to form a repeatable pattern.

This class is suitable for pretty much any skill level and covers all techniques required. Absolute beginners are welcome!

Tools, materials and equipment:

  • Lino & Wood Carving Chisel Tool Set;
  • Artists lino;
  • Cutting mat (or something else to protect your work surface);
  • Tablespoon;
  • Hard rubber ink roller;
  • Craft knife;
  • Fibre-based paper;
  • Acrylic paint, oil paint or block printing inks.

Please refer to the post on the Community Board for this class for the detailed description of the tools & materials needed.

I cannot wait to see your linocut patterns, join in now and share your designs!


Printmaking — Research Board on Pinterest 

If you are interested in making digital patterns check out our class Source & Mix: Digital Patterns from Vintage Encyclopaedia Illustrations.

Meet Your Teacher

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Evgeniya & Dominic Righini-Brand

Graphic Design & Photography

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These texturing techniques can be used to develop the aesthetic of your actual work or enhance the look of the previews or mock-ups you share online. And you can apply these effects to any kind of images, including collages, poster designs, illustrations, surface patterns, digital artworks, typographic designs, or digital photographs.

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Level: Beginner

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1. Introduction & Overview: Linocut is a really easy hand printing technique you can use to create your own wrapping paper, handmade wallpaper, art prints, gift cards, and presents for the festive season. You can also sell your Linocut prints on Etsy or as printed products on online platforms like Society6. This is Dominic from Attitude Creative, and in this class, we'll be learning how to create our own handmade Linocut patterns and print them at home using equipment usually found in your kitchen. This class will give you the opportunity to design and create wonderful abstract patterns, illustrations often needed to draw sophisticated elements first. I cannot wait to see your Linocut patterns. Enroll now and let's create something awesome. 2. What is Linocut: Linocut is a printmaking technique derived from woodcut in early 20th century and pioneered by the art group Die Brucke and artists like Pablo Picasso. Lino is traditionally used to cover kitchen floors because it's cheap and easy to install. Artists discovered that images can be cut into lino surface using a sharp knife or V-shaped chisel. It is then covered with paint or ink and then pressed onto paper or fabric to produce print. At the time, linocut techniques were considered radical as the art world struggled to move away from traditional academic styles. Lino is an ideal printing material, because it does not have any grain, unlike wood, make it easier to cut and less likely to split. It is easier to obtain certain artistic effects with lino than it is with most words, and when heated, lino becomes soft. Here in the early 20th century, linocut was often used to create wallpaper patterns, and in this class, we'll be learning how to create our own patterns for use in printed products and artwork. Have a look at our printmaking Pinterest board for inspiration and see what types of images and patterns you can create using linocut and printmaking techniques. You can use linocut patterns to create wrapping paper, handmade wallpaper, art prints, gift cards, and presents for the festive season. Lino and the tools required to make your own linocuts are available online or through local art suppliers. In the next video, I'll talk about the materials, tools, and paper required to make your own linocut patterns. 3. Materials & Tools: You are going to need a few tools, some ink or paint and paper, to complete this class, but don't panic. Most of what is required is inexpensive and readily available. To carve liner, you're going to need a liner and woodcarving chisel tool set. These normally come with a range of different chisels for cutting textures into liner in softwood. If you do not have a liner and woodcarving chisel tool set, you can find them on the internet or your local art supplier. They're usually not very expensive and you don't need to buy expensive tools to complete this class and produce liner cuts. You will also need a cutting mat. This will help protect your table when you're making your liner cut. Cutting mats also fairly inexpensive and can be purchased on the internet or your local art supplier. To you print your line cut, you will also need tablespoon. This we'll be using to rub on the back of a liner when making the prints. So make sure the spoon you're using is fairly strong. Plastic handles are best avoided. Pudding or serving spoons can also be used, but rolling pins are best avoided because they cannot apply specific amounts of pressure on an exact point. To print your liner, you are going to need some paint or ink. For this class, you can use acrylics, oil paints or printing inks. However, you're going to need to understand the difference between them. Acrylic paints are plastic-based and dry quickly. However, they leave a surface texture which may not be desirable. Oil based paints take far longer to dry but ultimately produce final prints. Printing inks produced the best results. However, they are expensive and should ideally be used for printing press. You will also need a rubber ink roller to evenly spread the ink or paint onto the liner for printing. Finally, to produce a print, you're going to need to have some high-quality paper. Your paper should be fiber-based. Glossy and plastic papers cannot be used because they do not absorb ink into the paper surface. Have a look at your local art supplier and if in doubt, use heavy duty watercolor or etching paper. If you're making wrapping paper, then consider using newsprint or even old newspaper. However, do not print onto newsprint paper with oil-based paints because the paint will go through the paper. So this is everything you'll need to complete the class and make your own liner cut prints. Join me in the next video where I will show you how to make your own liner of cuts. 4. Making Marks: I am almost ready to start experimenting and creating my own linocut patterns. However, there are a couple of important things to remember. Firstly, when carving lino, we can create a bit of a mess. First, we're not using any pencil, ink at this stage. The table where we're cutting is going to get covered in lino chips. We'll use a cutting mat or some old newspaper to protect the table and make it easier to tidy up afterwards. Secondly, it is really important you carve away from your body. Do not place your fingers in front of the blade or chisel because if you slip, you will cut your hand. I made my first linocut when I was five years old. I was carving a fish and I slipped and cut my finger. Now, we can start to experiment with the different patterns and marks that we can cut into the lino surface. I am going to cut my lino sheet into six smaller pieces. This will mean that I can create six little patterns which I can repeat or combine later when printmaking. Feel free to experiment with different shapes or sizes. To carve your lino, place it on the cutting mat and hold a ruler against it where you want to cut. Using a craft knife, cut along the edge of the ruler. You'll need to do it several times to cut through the material. Heating up a lino in hot water makes it easier to cut. I am now going to start creating my first experimental pattern. Sometimes it's easier to sketch what you want to cut on the lino first with a pen or pencil. This pattern is going to be based on circles. In the middle of my lino, I'm going to have a complete circle. Then I'm going to have quarter circles, top, bottom, left, and right. When my linocut is finished and I'm printmaking into it's repeatable pattern, the quarter circles will create complete circles where they touch. For my second pattern, I'm going to repeat the process except this time I'm going to use squares. In the middle of my lino, I'm going to have a complete square and then top, bottom, left and right, I'm going to have quarter squares again. When the lino print is repeated, the quarter sized squares will be combined and create bigger squares like this. For my third pattern, I'm going to do something a little bit more experimental and show you what different types of marks and textures you can create when working with lino. I'm going to start by carving horizontal and vertical lines through my lino, dividing it into four separate squares. In the first space, I'm going to create a texture by cutting diagonal lines through the lino and I'm going to have gaps in between several millimeters in width. In the second space, I'm going to repeat the process, but this time, I'm going to carve diagonal lines both ways. This will create a crosshatched texture. For the third space, I'm again going to repeat the process, except this time I'm going to make crosshatched pattern using horizontal and vertical lines. For the fourth and final space, I'm going to create texture by slowly chipping away little pieces of lino. When chipping away the lino, I make sure that I'm always going in the same direction, but you can also create a more chaotic texture by turning the lino and chipping away little pieces of lino in different directions. Be experimental and have fun. My fourth pattern is going to have a special technique I learnt to do when I was a child from reading comic books. To do this, I need to use a very fine chisel and not cut too deep. Firstly, cutaway small area and then rotate the lino and repeat the process adjacent to the original area. Keep repeating the process until all of the lino is covered. You should have something that looks like this. For my fifth pattern, I'm going to cut diagonal lines from the corners across my lino. This will create four separate triangle areas. Now, again, using a very fine chisel, I'm going to slowly fill the top and bottom triangle areas with a crosshatched texture. The other two areas, I'm going to leave blank. Here's how my final pattern looks. My sixth and final pattern is also going to have four triangle areas. Two of them are going to have horizontal lines. Here is how the finished example looks. Be experimental and see what patterns, marks, and textures you can create using linocuts. Try making geometric patterns or maybe something chaotic. Join me in the next video, where I'll show you how you can print your linocut patterns using only equipment found in your kitchen. 5. Printing Linocut Patterns: To print your linocut pattern, you do not need to have any specialist equipment. All you need is a tablespoon, paper, your linocut, ink roller, and some acrylic oil paint. Before you can start printing, you need to ink up your linocut. To do this, apply a small amount of paint or ink to a glass surface or plate and roll it with ink roller until the paint or ink is evenly spread. Then spread the paint or ink onto your linocut. Ensure that you cover the entire surface evenly and do not use too much paint, because this will clog the gaps. Gently place your lino on top of the paper. Holding the tablespoon with your thumb pressed into its bowl work your way over the entire surface of the lino rubbing it into the paper. It is really important that you do not move the lino whilst you're rubbing it, because this will smudge the ink. I usually hold it down with my other hand. When you are finished, gently pill up the lino to reveal the print underneath. To recreate a pattern, simply repeat process with another print adjacent to the original print. Keep on repeating the print until the entire surface is covered. Now, place your print somewhere safe to dry. Remember that if you're using oil based paints, these can take a really long time to dry and it's best stored with a sheet of paper in between them to stop the paint from smudging. Join me in the next video, where we'll briefly discuss how you can apply and develop your linocut patterns further. 6. Using Your Patterns & Conclusion: I really hope that you have enjoyed participating in this class and look forward to seeing your liner cut patterns. Think about how you can develop your patterns further. This might involved printing different elements in different colors. Perhaps it might involve a clever application. For example, this pattern I've scanned and published in our Society6 shop as a bag and cushion cover. That's it for this class. I really hope you enjoyed it and learned something new. If you liked this class, please leave a review so more people can discover it. Please post your work in the project section for this class and if you go into post your work on Instagram, these tag attitude skills so we can see that too. If you have any questions, leave a comment on the community board for this class, and I will happily answer your questions and provide you with feedback. Thank you for enrolling in this class, and I hope to see you in our other classes.