How to Create a Printing Plate Part 1
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In this craft video Cheri shows us a how to make a printing plate and use it for paper prints.


In this segment, we’re going to be doing a print making project together. I'm going to teach you how to create your own printing plate and then you’re going to actually pull your own prints, create an addition of prints. And then I'm going to show you a really neat way to preserve your printing plate so it can actually become a different kind of a project. So what you’re going to need to get started for this project is going to be a piece of cardboard that’s actually going to service our printing plate. You’re going to need some pieces of tag board or even construction paper will work fine because we’re going to cut those into the different shapes and glue those onto our printing plate. You're going to need some polymer medium for your gluing, a paint brush and a couple of water. And then later on, we’re actually going to need a scrap of maybe a piece of glass or plastic. You're going to need a printing brayer that you can get it at your local art store. You’re going to need some water base printing ink and of course you’re going to need some cool papers to put your prints on. So, we’re going to go ahead and get started. And the first thing you need whenever you do any kind of project is you need to come up with a sketch from which to work. So what I'm going to do is draw a little sketch here of what I want my finished print to look like. And, I've been thinking about what I wanted to do and I thought maybe what I would do is a little scene with a little puppy dog and maybe the dog house in the background. And then a little bit further in the background maybe I could put like a tree in the backyard. While you’re planning this out, what you want to do is kind of think in terms of shapes that you can cut out and glue on top of each other. You’re going to be creating layers that you're going to glue on top of each other. For instance, once I cut out the head then I’ll cut out two little circles for as cheeks and glue those on top of the head. And then a smaller circle will be glued on top of the two cheeks, okay. And then you’ll cut out the ears separately. So you're going to be doing a lot of cutting and pasting. And then back here, I'm going to put a tree with maybe a couple of leaves in the background here. So, oh and lets see maybe we’ll put, and for this lines you can either cut out thin lines or we could even use a hot glue gun. Let’s put some flowers on the front here. Okay, so here’s my preliminary sketch of my little dog and I think when I do—I'm going to move this color up here a little bit, more like this. The first thing I'm going to do is cut a shape that is basically a rectangle and it’s going to serve to indicate where the ground and the sky would meet, what we call the horizon line. So, I'm just going to take a piece of my paper and I'm going to lay this down on here, so I got an idea of where to cut and just kind of go across like that. Okay, so we’re going to take the polymer medium, the gloss medium. And we’re going to put it on the cardboard and then we’re going to lay our first piece of tag board right on top of it to glue it in place. And it’s going to be real important that all this is glued down very, very securely because when you start to do your print making and as you’re rolling across the plate, sometimes you can actually post some of your pieces off the plate, and we don’t want to do that. Okay, so we’ve not created this part, alright. Next thing I'm going to do is I'm going to cut out, and you can actually do some measuring here. I'm going to cut out a little square here and then I don’t have to worry about anything being drawn on here, okay. And it overlaps just above my horizon line. So, I'm going to glue this in place like that. And at any point in time, you can go over what you’ve glued in place. You go over it with the thin coat of polymer or gloss medium. This is going to serve as kind of water proofing, because when you start putting your ink on it rolling your ink across it, we want to protect the paper from breaking down because of the water in the ink. So the glaze really protects the printing plate. Okay, now we need a little triangle for in top of the little dog house. So what I'm going to do is just kind of redraw it, and cut out my little triangle. Remember I told you when we started the—we’re basically talking about shapes and cutting out shapes and overlapping on. So, there we have a little house and we need the little opening there. So I'm just going to cut out my little door from my dog house and put my dog house in place, okay. Now, I have to tell you that you can actually—in the way you put on your polymer, you could actually do like little—if you put some polymer down like this, I could actually make little lines in the ground and those will print if I let those dry. Those will actually print later, and I'm going to cut this off here. And what I'm going to do to make my dog is I'm actually going to cut apart. The dog’s body, and then I can layer things on top of it, and put the cheeks on top his face like this. And then I think we’re going to take the hot glue gun and you like a little line here so we can separate his hind leg from his front pose and we just do a little tongue. And I probably should do that tongue before I put his cheeks down but, that’s okay we can pull them backup. Add some little like whisker dots, I'm pushing pretty hard and hoping that will happen is I’ll make a little indentation and those will hopefully print. What you’re going to want to do at the very end is make certain that you’ve putted a thin coating of polymer over the entire printing plate, because that’s going to ensure that when you go to do your printing that the ink it’s not going to be absorb into your cardboard and you’re not going to get a real good print.