Friday, December 5, 2014

December StencilClub: Make a Printing Plate!



Hi, this is Gwen here today to share with you a fun technique and a project using the new, exclusive! December StencilClub stencils. I have to say, when I opened up this month's envelope, there might have been a small squeal of happiness. Just a little one... lol. I love this month's designs (as always, of course!) and immediately had an idea of what I wanted to try with them.

This month I used foam sheets to create a monoprinting plate from my stencils (I used 9x12 sheets of Inovart Presto Foam Printing Plates - I got a 12-pack at Blick for pretty cheap.) You can also use a piece of clean styrofoam from a take-out container, fun foam / craft foam (although you have to push harder,) or something similar. I love this technique because you can create kind of a block-print look from your stencils.

To start, all you have to do is lay your stencil over top and get a stylus (or a ball point pen, or whatever is handy) and start tracing your design into the foam. You don't have to apply much pressure, but you want to make sure your lines are clean and visible.


Ahem... you may have caught my boo boo. And if you did, you beat me to it! This is a do as I say and not as I do moment... if your stencil has letters, numbers, or words, flip it over before you do this part. See step 4 as proof. I was having so much fun tracing, I ended up with a total "duh" moment later on. Oh well, I doubt I'll forget again any time soon!

Carrying on... you can leave it as is, or you can add the next step. I took my 4x4 and 6x6 stencils and, with the large stencil still in place, layered them over top and traced designs into some of the letters and numbers on my plate. Hopefully you can see below what I mean:

Voila! A (backwards) printing plate! You can see all the extra detail you get by layering your stencils.

Next for the fun part - paint it! I put dabs of different paints on and spread them with my brayer.

You can use these printing plates like you would a gelli plate. (Just keep in mind you'll need to work a bit faster since the styrofoam will absorb some of the paint where a gelli plate will not.) Get the paint on them and start pulling prints!

Just hopefully not backwards prints like mine. I thought about redoing it and pretending this never happened, but decided that since I was going to be using it for background elements, it didn't bother me. And bonus, if I decide I don't want to make more prints with it (or the paint builds up too much) I can use the plate in something else. And the letters will be facing the right way. So then I can say I meant to do that ;)

I pulled a few prints from my plate and then switched to an art journal page. I put down some paint as a background and let it dry, then used contrasting colors on my plate and printed directly into my art journal.

Look at all that great texture from the layered stencils! So fun.

From here I added a few more layers, starting with torn pieces of book paper that I'd printed on, and then I used paint to stencil some letters and numbers from the 9x12 stencil that I wanted to use to start words and sentences in my journaling.

Next I added some white paint through the 6x6 stencil and some detailing with a black Stabilo All Marks pencil.

Once it was all dry, I used a Fude Ball pen to write my journaling on top. And that's it! A finished art journal page and a new printing plate that I can use over and over.
I hope you enjoyed today's post, and that you're excited and inspired for when your stencils come in the mail! If you're not a member of StencilClub yet, you can sign up by the 15th and still get these stencils to start your membership.

Thanks for stopping by!

Gwen Lafleur

16 comments:

  1. I like the backwards look. Texture need not be readable.

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    1. Thanks Tommy! I figured it wouldn't matter, and I don't think you can even tell :)

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  2. Gwen, you rocked this! Totally rocked it. LOVE

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    1. Thanks Mary Beth! Totally easy to do with your stencils... this month's kit is amazing!!!

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  3. Oh Gwen! This is Brilliant! I have never thought of this..... but definitely will be trying this in the future! Thanks for the inspiration!

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    1. Thanks Janet! So glad you liked it :) The printing plates are so fun, and you can do them in lots of different sizes. It should be interesting to see what happens as I get more layers of paint on the plate... never ending playtime!

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  4. Very cool Gwen!
    Take care and STAY POSITIVE!

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  5. Wow! I never thought of using stencils that way! Thank you! And you are so kind to let us know about your "mistake"--I am sure you saved a lot of us from doing it right side up and thus "wrong!"

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    1. Thanks Nan! Maybe I'll pretend I did it that way on purpose as a public service ;) I hope you try it out and come back and share!

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  6. Love this. I have wanted to try but never thought of using my stencils. Thank you for the inspiration!

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    1. Thanks Denise! I like it with stencils because it's a lot easier than trying to come up with my own designs... lol. I hope you'll come back and share your results if you try it!

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  7. Gwen this is such a great idea. You get the layered effect with just one pull from the plate. Clever you.

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    1. Thanks Jo! It's definitely a fun little shortcut when you're building up backgrounds :)

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  8. Thank you for sharing this Gwen. This is the first time i have seen something like that but i will definitely give it a try.

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  9. awesome post - you've given me some great ideas and I LOVE that your prints are backwards! That makes them even cooler! Great colors too.

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  10. It's amazing that you never run out of new ideas. ❤️❤️

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