Crafty Mama: Children’s art as lino prints!

Artist and zinester Fawne DeRosia was doing some lino printing with her daughter when her daughter expressed interest in doing it too. Fawne asked her daughter to draw a picture on a lino block, and then cut the block out herself because the tools are too sharp for kids to use. Here’s the resulting print! Fawne’s daughter specifically requested the pink ink!

This is a great way to immortalize your child’s drawings. You could use these prints for all kinds of applications, including framing prints for gifts (grandparents!), making greeting cards (give a stack of 5 or 10 with envelopes for another great grandparent gift), stamping onto fabric (would look great on a t-shirt or onesie for a younger sibling). Repeated patterns of the image would be cool wrapping paper.

In case you aren’t familiar with linocuts, here’s a quick tutorial:

Carve Your Own Stamp

Carving medium (I used a Speedy Cut block)
Carving tools
Acrylic paint or a stamp pad

Create your own stationery, fabric patterns, and more by carving a simple stamp.

  1. I used a Speedy Cut Printing Block & wood carving tools. I cut the 3×4 block up into smaller pieces.
  2. Draw your design on the piece of block. Black out all the parts that will be making the image. DO NOT carve the black parts.
  3. I usually start with an outline around the black parts. I also like to leave a frame around the edge, but that’s just me.
  4. Instead of carving away all the white on this example, I made lines radiating out of the heart for more visual interest.

Notes and Tips:

  • To transfer an existing image, color over the image with pencil (just the black parts of the image), and turn the image over onto the stamping medium. Burnish (that means rub) with something like a spoon to transfer the image to the carving block. Darken the transfer with black marker to make a more definite image. You won’t get an exact copy of the original picture (for one thing, it will be in reverse), but this is another fun way to make a unique image.
  • If you don’t like the way your stamp looks when it’s done, just carve more away. Or, turn your stamp over and carve the other side. Or both.
  • You can use an inkpad to make your stamped image, or experiment with paint, water-based markers, or anything else you can come up with.
  • Use your stamp on paper, fabric, or anything you can think of! Here’s what I did with a pair of wristbands: