Collagraph: Scouting for Tulip Petals (& Art Groups on Facebook)

Save for later & Share!

Making Art with Other People

Make art more often by joining a group, taking a class or scheduling your creative time with fellow artists.

A schedule makes you accountable, and anticipation from art-minded friends expecting you to show up can be the right kick in the pants to Get Things Done.

So Many Artists tell me they don’t create often enough. Self-doubt, time management, life/work-conflicts, and health issues are mortar in the block walls.

And then there is the subtly squirmy discomfort with working alone. We know that making art is a solo endeavor, so that can be part of the culprit.  If this describes you, even a little bit, I’d like to recommend an ardent pursuit of connection to other artists.

mixed media collagraph printmaking
Adding colored pencils to the dried ink on the first collagraph in this edition of five

Find Your Tribe

Make the effort to seek camaraderie with like-minded, inventive, generous and knowledgeable folks – even if it’s only on Zoom or Social Media.  

It’s especially relevant if you live in a region that’s thin on the arts. Participate in an active group of printmakers, or painters on Facebook.  

Making art is a slow car ride alone, and a truck full of art friends chattering about supplies, tips, and exhibit opportunities makes the ride so much richer.  

We grow faster in a community than we do hunkered down, alone with self doubt and time management hiccups.

Try joining a Group, following a Page, and finding someone who’s interested in an accountability schedule with you. (I meet online every two weeks with an accountability partner. We live in different states, had never met, and we work in different fields.  But we have the same goals related to productivity. #itworks)

Printmaking Pages and Groups on Facebook

Each group on Facebook has its own set of rules, so read them to know how often you can post, etc.

Here are a few printmaking groups and pages I like.

(What’s the difference? Pages are all public, and you have to Like or Follow a page to see the posts in your feed. If you post to a page, no one can see the image. Boo! But Groups can be public (click the join button and you’re automatically in) or private (click the join button and a moderator lets you in). You have to join a group to see what’s happening inside. You can post your art in the group, and people can comment or like it.

Facebook Groups vs Pages

All About Collagraph Printmaking

Collagraph Worldwide

Craft Printmakers (XCut XPress)

Printmakers International

The Relief Printmakers Group

Wood Engraving

Printmaking Presses and Equipment

Drypoint Printmaking

mat board collagraph printmaking
After a trip through the press, pulling an artist’s proof of the collagraph print
printing collagraphs a la poupee
After the plate is sealed front, back and edges with three coats of acrylic varnish, it’s ready for ink

Drawing and Painting Groups on Facebook


Colored Pencil Tips and Resources

Realistic Watercolors


Pastel Pencil Artists

Social Media gets a bad wrap for being a time-suck, a place for lurkers, covert scammers and hidden malware.

All of those accusations are true, but every one of them can be found in places other than social media.

Facebook is a microcosm of society, so you get both the good and the bad. Be wise; exercise your freak-radar, and sharpen your discernment skills. If it looks suspicious and your neck hairs make you pause, scroll past, move on, and don’t click it.

mat board or press board collagraphs
Shallow cuts with a sharp blade, so I can peel the top layer of mat board away, and leave a little fuzzy, ink-holding trough.

How do you make these Collagraphs?

Are you curious about making one of these collagraphs? Gather supplies and watch one of the tutorial videos posted on my YouTube channel so you can get started with one of your own.  

Step into my studio and take a class at your leisure… watch as many times as you like, hit pause, slow the video or speed it up.

(A friend of mine just fixed her garbage disposal from a tutorial on youtube, and I just extended a sprinkler line to water newly planted roses with a tutorial on youtube. #DIYeverything )

how to make a mat board collagraph
Starting with the back of a sheet of mat board, and a graphite drawing; cutting just enough away to create a channel to hold ink…

All the Things

Collagraph methods are amazingly varied, and entire books are published on plate-building, and printing options.

(Many of them are out of print, but I like this one and this one.) I’ve filmed and edited a few tutorials (so far) on YouTube to get you started.

I recommend starting with this simple mat board, no press required, line-style intaglio collagraph portrait of a house.  You can try this tutorial to learn how to ink your plate a la poupee style in multiple colors to get a full color print with one pass through a press, like the cat collagraph posted above.

You can also try this tutorial with a single plate, inked and printed two ways; one in full color, and one in a single color. There are more tutorials on my channel. If you have any questions, you can leave them here, or in the comment section under each video.

tuxedo cat in the sun
Scout, the model, demanding treats and petting for services rendered.

Racing Towards Art Making Time

As I type this, the year is coming to a close. I feel a sense of subtle urgency to get things done in my studio, and after a quick trip away this weekend, I’ll be diving in to finish projects.

How about you? What do you hope to check off on your To-Do list before the close of the year?

Thanks for stopping by and I’ll see you in the next post –


P.S. Do you know the Australian architect-turned-artist Liz Steel? Check out her work here. She also teaches online watercolor, pen and ink (watercolor) and sketching courses, like this one focused on edges in pen and ink. I’ve never taken one of Liz’s courses, but I sure like her work.  Have you taken a class with her?

mat board collagraph
Scouting for Tulip Petals 7×7 inch collagraph (available here)

Art Quote

You’re going to see a lot of stupid stuff out there and you’re going to feel like you need to correct it. One time I was up late on my laptop and my wife yelled at me, “Quit picking fights on Twitter and go make something.

Austin Kleon
Which Watercolor Paper Should I Buy?
Here is a free three-page download all about watercolor paper. Everything you need to know to choose which works best for you.

Save for later & Share!

15 thoughts on “Collagraph: Scouting for Tulip Petals (& Art Groups on Facebook)”

  1. Such a beautiful print! I do find it difficult to fit ‘everything’ in as I need to work and my eyes are not great when the light is dim, but I have joined a local printing class and a couple of groups on FB! I try and do something at least once a week, which can be a lot for me! 🙂

    1. Hi Arlene, I know it’s hard to prioritize something as fun as art making when LIFE stuff tugs on time, so I applaud your efforts to schedule creative adventures outside the house at workshops. Having a set time and date and a place to be helps us stay on it. And hopefully, the groups and the sharing of work in them will be a place for encouragement abd inspiration. 🙂

  2. Kirsten Scheid

    There’s a possibility I’m wasting time right now! Thanks for the Facebook links, and our generous help – and the beautiful prints.

    1. Hey Kristen, I am quite familiar with the wasting of precious time perusing various blogs and artists’ web sites, so we are both certified Club Members, no? 🙂 Thanks for your visit.

  3. @Barbara – I wish you could be there too, but I’d get no mingling done, because we’d sit in chairs in the corner and talk about art all night. 🙂 Still, thanks for your good wishes!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *