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Eraser prints.

The cut-eraser stamp is a miniature printmaking technique that allows students to explore many design experiments. It is also a simple process that does not require hazardous or costly materials. Cut-eraser stamps are a good introduction to repeat patterning, and the repeat pattern systems that students learn can later be applied to any printmaking media.

Students begin by sketching designs within a 1" (2.54 cm) square on a sheet of graph paper. They should leave parts of the outer edges of the squares intact. The selected design is drawn directly onto the eraser with a fine, felt-tip pen. Negative areas are marked clearly, and carefully cut away with a "V" linoleum cutting tool; X-acto knives are used for straight cuts. Erasers are extremely easy to cut, but students must be cautious so they do not cut away parts of the design they intended to keep.

With the finished eraser and a stamp pad, the student completes a series of exercises in repeat pattern printing, using networks such as square, brick half-drop and rotation.

After these practice exercises, students create a colored printed sheet. I suggest using various types of absorbent papers such as rice paper, newsprint and graph paper. It is helpful to draw a pencil grid lightly onto the paper if graph paper is not available. Students color each section of the eraser with thick watercolor markers. They must work quickly so that the inks do not dry on the eraser before printing. After the eraser is colored with the marker, print immediately in the designated space. A direct touch with a colored pencil or pen may be added. Students used a rotation pattern to create the designs shown in this article.

Small gift cards can be made with just four rotation printings of the eraser. Eraser stamps are excellent for stationery decoration, wrapping paper or whenever a decorated paper is needed. Eraser carving is easy, fun and lends itself to endless creative exploration.
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Title Annotation:working with cut erasers for printmaking
Author:Levine, Barbara
Publication:School Arts
Date:Feb 1, 1994
Previous Article:The Art of the Near East and Ancient Egypt.
Next Article:Imprint on the World.

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