Monoprinting take II — Success!

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Okay. We really got it this time. While Maia and I had fun last time, I wasn't as happy with the final results and thought that the process could be improved for younger (and older) kids so that it was both fun AND produced a crisper final product.

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First of all, we used a couple of acrylic box frames we had lying around since pink and green mama, a printmaker, suggested doing the prints on glass or plexi. This worked so well! Not only were the box frames easy to work on and easy to clean up, they also produced a crisp print edge without effort since they were elevated. The second big change was using rollers to apply the paint in an evenly thin layer. So no gloppy mess.

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After rolling the paint on we drew our designs using the q-tips as before.

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Here, Maia is telling me she drew a hospital kit for her friend Marlise.

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Then we pressed the paper over the image. See the nice crisp design and edges? I love it.

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A couple more prints. This one is a "baby duck inside a sack inside her mama's belly."

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And this one is "a brain — it's a part of your body."
So… Give this project a try. It was fun and effective. If you don't have an acrylic box frame, try a piece of plexi or glass (from an unused frame) or maybe the lid of a washable box (I'm eyeing our tin domino box) or ?

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  1. says

    Those turned out great. We have been printing with styrofoam but I have a feeling my daughter would enjoy this process even more. Really like the idea of using an acrylic box frame.

  2. Mika says

    We did this yesterday based on your original post and it was great. I made a cardboard frame to put over the design before printing so we got the clean edge, and we used a sponge to apply the paint. Worked great too. Thanks!

  3. karen says

    used cereal boxes, showbox lids…this would be a great opportunity to recylce

  4. Edith says

    I just want to say you must be a great mum! I got inspired so much for my brownies sessions and for activities with my future children:) Thank you!
    Edith from the Czech republic

  5. Amber says

    I’ve done this before with my art class and used disposable plates. The higher end plastic ones work well (my husband brings them home from leftover meetings). They give a nice end and the finished shape is round (of course) which is nice. Also, we turn the plate over on the paper then pull off the plate instead of the other way around. This also allows us to make a composition by putting more than one on a page. Love your blog!

  6. says

    This may sound crazy especially to really clean Moms (I guess if you allow your children painting at home, you’re not that obsessive) but I was a preschool teacher for many years and we used to allow the children to first finger paint on the tables in our preschools. They had a ball, we had pails of water and large sponges ready nearby for the cleanup, (They were also covered up with large garbage bags) After they finished their finger paintings they drew the designs on the table and we then used the paper to pick up their designs.
    (Often the kids had no interest in the printing part the after they finger painted ..so I guess it depends what your desired end result is),

  7. says

    I have fond memories of doing that as a preschooler myself in nursery school (back in 1970)…fingerpainting directly on the tables and making prints from the designs. It was one of the few “process-oriented” activities we did back then, and it stands out in my mind after all these years!!

  8. says

    I love this project! I bought some cheap tiles from Home Depot to print on instead of plexiglas glass and they work really well. Just make sure you buy tiles that are glossy and smooth and not textured.

  9. says

    Acrylic can be used instead of glass, strong but not easily broken and the price is also quite cheap. It is suitable to be creative for the kids