Color Monotype Portrait Printed without a Press

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Color Monotype Portrait Printed without a Press

This week in my Mastrius group, I demo’d an approach to making color monotype portrait prints without the use of a press.

Here are some of the screen shots from the zoom demo (which is available to members of the group to re-watch for a month).

This is an extremely versatile way to make full color monotype prints with little more than two sheets of plexiglass, inks, a brayer, a spoon or a baren, printmaking paper and a china marker.

Tracing outlines with a china marker onto a sheet of clear plexiglass laid over my crayon sketch with a grease pencil. You can also trace a photo.
Now that I have a map of the image on the underside of the plexiglass, and I’ll ink the verso in layers of color.
After three passes of color transfer, the image is starting to build slowly.
Rolling on layers of ink and then wiping parts away before pressing paper to the plate with a wooden baren
The image is starting to emerge from the ink after about 6-8 colors have been layered on the print.
Adding polka dots to the shirt, and a bit of darker tone to the background on the last layers of color.
Color monotype portrait drying in the studio
The finished monotype print, all dry and listed in my Etsy Shop over here.
  • Dean Russel Thompson is an artist and printmaker in Colorado who shares a generous amount of knowledge about his practice on his website. This essay is about printmaking ink and modifiers, and it’s written in a straightforward style to help you understand ink, even if you’re new to printmaking. Poke around his site and read about his process, his print methods and his art.
Mixing inks on a sheet of plexiglass to make an avalanche of color monotype prints in my studio. There’s more to come, so stay tuned. 😊
YouTube for Artists online panel with Belinda and Lorraine

Artist Exposure, Tutorials and Passive Income

I’ll be on an online panel this week with my friend and fellow Mastrius Mentor/Watercolor painter Lorraine Watry, to talk about YouTube for Artists. If you’ve wondered about the pros and cons of starting a YouTube Channel, register to listen and ask your questions this Thursday over here.

Till then, I hope your art supplies are in your hands, and plans for your next creative endeavor are full of excitement and anticipation.

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


P.S. My friend and fellow printmaker Nanette Wallace is having a fantastic show of her swimming, floating figurative monotype prints at Guardino Gallery in Portland, Oregon. Take a look at her amazing work here.

Art Quote

We must assume that all of our paintings are flawed. It is troubling, but perfection is a poor alternative to making imperfect paintings that reflect our moment’s honest vision.

Charles Reid
printmaking ink rolled out to make wood lithography or mokulito prints

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2 thoughts on “Color Monotype Portrait Printed without a Press”

  1. Shelley Noble

    Ms. Del Pesco, you have thrilled me with this post. A thousand thank yous for what you share here.

    1. Hello Shelley, I’m so glad you’re enjoying the content here, and I truly hope you’re getting inky fingers and print-pulling thrills in your art space. Happy making!

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