Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Napa Vines At Night Printmaking Lesson

I came up with this lesson as a fun way to start out the school year here in Napa.  I wanted to teach the students about perspective and do a lesson relevant to our area.  We are in the middle of "Crush" here which is Harvest Time for the grapes.  This could be done as a drawing or even painting project, but I chose printmaking.

Using a foam plate I cut the curved part of the plate off, leaving a nice flat circle for the students to draw on.  We'll do some sketches on paper first and then draw on the foam.  I'll ask the students how does an artist make things look closer or farther away and we'll work on one point perspective.

Start with the mountains, then the foothills, and finally the hills with the vines.  Practice starting the vines and finishing them so they look closer and farther away.  I added a few stars to the night sky.

Here is what the foam plate looks like, wherever the student draws into the foam will print as a white line.  Note - the image prints backwards.

Using water based ink, a breyer and a plexiglass square for the ink each student can ink their plate and press the plate on paper to create their print(s).  I put newspaper under everything to limit the mess.  I have them use a soft cloth to rub the back of the foam firmly to get a crisp print.  
Now they can number and sign their artwork!
Happy Harvest or as we say here in Napa - "Crush"!

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