Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Circles and Curves!

As you can see the latest challenge for the GPP Street Team is to SHAPE IT UP! I have finally settled on a shape that will allow me to prepare samples for a class that I will be teaching to fourth graders on Friday and that will qualify for the Challenge. This is a level of organization that does not usually befall me and I must admit that I am quite pleased with myself!!
The shape that I will be using is a circle, actually many different circles. The medium will be Gelatin Monoprinting on both fabric and paper. The paper pieces will become background pages for my visual journal after being used as samples in the Gelatin Monoprinting class that I will be teaching to EIGHTY- that is 8-0 - fourth graders!! The fabric pieces will be used as samples as well ,as I am being advertized as a Fiber Arts Visiting Artist. After the class I will use these printed pieces in fiber collage mini quilts and they may even appear on my Etsy site.
So here is the set-up:

Regular, nothing fancy, acrylic paints, a brayer, and a tray full of extra hard solidified gelatin as my printing surface. The printing tools are a toilet paper tube, bottle caps, plastic thread spools, bubble wrap and a paint brush end.

Here you can see some circles of plastic canvas and a clutch of spools that I taped together to create a specific pattern. this is all about making your own tools and using what you ahve. When I teach children I really try to empahsize that specialized tools are not needed to create art. Using things found around the home, with a parents permission , can yield totally wonderful results!!

The paint is loaded onto the gelatin and then subtracted using various "tools".. The tools are then relieved of the paint that they picked up by stamping on either paper or fabric, in this case, paper.

Here you can see the imprint left by the circles of plastic canvas, the bottle caps and the spools.

Here is the gelatin palte loaded with paint and then I used the end of a skewer to remove swirls and circles of paint. Below you can see the resulting prints first on paper,

And then on fabric. This fabric was intially printed with tiny black circles.

Here are some more fabric and paper printings!!

Yellow paper with orange paint.

White fabric with swirls thru pink orange and yellow paint and then more paint removed with large bubble wrap.

White fabric with paint removed using the circles of plastic canvas . THe small cluster of circles in the top right is the result of a group of bubbles that formed when the gelatin was formed. MORE CIRCLES!!!!!
( This slab of gelatin was made using KNOX gelatin made in a 1:1 ratio of gelatin to water and has been stable in the fridge covered with sran wrap for three weeks between uses.) Youc an be sure to see some of these prints in upcoming projects and I hope that everyone might try this really amazing technique for creating one of a kind prints!!! I will also be featuring pictures and tales of my teaching experience of this coming Friday, here on my blog!!

I also must thank Michelle Ward for offering this Challenge at this time as it really got the gears (more circles) turning to create some interesting tools for this class!!

(Addendum posted 1/29)
After recieving some wonderful comments, I realized that some of you may think that this is a regular deal with the 80 kids!! Not so much!!! this is a one shot gig and it is at a private school so I am pretty sure that I will have lots of help. to do this on a regular basis would be more than I could handle but I am soooo very grateful that there are wonderful teachers out there who do it all the time!!!


Judy said...

Great, great circles Elizabeth! I like the plastic canvas circles...and what a happy accident with those bubbles!!!
Thanks for sharing your gelatin recipe. I adore monoprinting and simply do not do enough of it.
I know your class will go well....but better you than me with EIGHTY 4th graders! Whoa!!!!

Keep us posted as we'll be holding our breath!


Anonymous said...

WOW Elizabeth! This is fantastic!! The fourth graders are going to be in love with you....what a great idea..and I love that you did it all with household supplies..PERFECT!

michelle ward said...

"got the gears turning", love that! all of these circle offerings are fabulous! the taped together spools is genius! thanks for sharing your shape with us elizabeth - and good luck with the 80 students!!! they have a fun adventure ahead!

jewelrygirl said...

I am so fascinated! That is exactly what I want to be doing.....on paper and fabric! You are a great inspiration, yet again.

It is awesome!

Robin said...

How many 4th graders per class? Wish you were a teacher in my class when I was a 4th grader!!! We NEVER got any awesome art like this. Delightful that you emphasize making art tools from what ever is at hand! Great results too!

Robin A.

Anonymous said...

You teach 80 students - wow! I get 30 teens on the library after school and I'm exhasuted LOL. I really like your explanation of using a gelatin plate. People tend to make it sound so complicated that I have been put off trying. But now I might just have to give it a shot. Your circles are great btw, especially the ones with all the patterning in them - very cool.

Maj said...

Your gel prints are great! I love this method and I agree with you in using what you have.

Elizabeth Seaver said...

So cool to see the gelatin printmaking in process. Thanks for describing it so carefully. I can't wait to see what "circles" around from all this creativity!

Kim Mailhot said...

What a wonderful project ! For the 4th graders or anyone ! The results are lovely and will make wonderful backgrounds for anything else you do as well !

Thanks for the gelatin plate tips ! Another fun technique to add to the try pile !

Nice job Crusader !

Pumpkin Delight (Kimberly) said...

Oh, these are beautiful. Thanks for sharing the process. What beautiful paper that is, and I can think of all kinds of beautiful projects to use it for. Just stopped by from GPP. Thanks for sharing your work.

Jeanne Turner McBrayer said...

Very nice little toot on gelatin printing, which I have never tried. The kids will love this lesson!

jewelrygirl said...

Elizabeth, I just found a great blog. I don't know if you know of it. It is

It is GREAT!

Anonymous said...

Elizabeth, thankyou for this awesome post. Now I want to try this, it sounds like something I can do in my apt. kitchen. I found you through the GPP Street Team. The projects look great!.

Jacquelene L.


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