A Poor-Woman’s Print Making

Printmaking may seem intimidating, just like everything else, but it really does not have to be.

In fact, is it so simple that I can show you how to make a basic print in 6 steps. Yes.

Just 6.

Everything you need is very affordable and easy to find. There also happen to be only 6 things on the list! How handy.

The List

Acrylic Paint

Styrofoam Plates

Foam roller or brush


Dull Pencil

Rolling Pin (Or a nearly expired can of beans from the back of your cupboard works just as well)

Step 1: Doodle



You have to decide what image you want to print. I find the easiest thing to do is either doodle or go onto your Pinterest and look at your boards. Most likely there are images that you really like on there. It will give you some inspiration.
I just happen to have an affinity for pears. You will want to make your image or doodle the size of your Styrofoam plate. I put my plate under the tracing paper that I was using to have as a guideline. I only used the tracing paper because I couldn’t find any other paper around. I also didn’t feel like leaving the kitchen table to go find other paper.

*Hint: cut the rim off your plate. It makes things a lot easier.

Step 2: Trace and Imprint



You have your image and now you need to get it on your plate. Simply put your plate under your paper and take your dull pencil and outline your image. You will want to press a little hard. The goal is to get at least a vague outline, then when you lift off your paper, you can go back over the outline on the Styrofoam. Make sure you don’t press too hard, though. You don’t want to go through the plate, but you also want deep enough grooves that the paint won’t get in there.

Step 3: Paint



Use your foam roller (or brush) to paint directly onto the plate. You want the coat to cover the Styrofoam thoroughly, but not so heavily where it starts going into the nice grooves in the plate. Keep those cracks white.

Step 4: Lay Down The Nice Paper



Get out your nice piece of paper. This is what your image will be transferred onto. Center it nicely over your image and be prepared to get our your rolling pin. Steps 3-6 happen in very quick succession because if the paint starts drying, there won’t be a very good outcome! (Aka, the paint will dry and you will get diddly-squat for a print.)

Step 5: Roll



Use your roller and firmly roll back and forth on the back of the paper. You do not want the paper to shift or your print will be all blurry. Be thorough with the rolling, and don’t peek until you think you’ve rolled over the entire surface a few times.

Step 6: You’re Done!



Peel off your paper, starting at one corner and working your way into the opposite direction. No smudging that way. And if you followed these easy steps you should have an image on that paper!

I plan on doing a series of these pears in different colors and framing them in white frame. Maybe I will even put them in my kitchen.

Now go out and print something!


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