Lesson #3: Transferring our Drawings to the Styrofoam Plate

Part of the unit: Creating an Animal Print |


How can we transfer our drawing to our printing plate?
Students will be able to:
Transfer their drawings to a Styrofoam plate
Add lines and patterns to create visual texture, interest and contrast.
Students will understand that artists:
Choose new ways of using familiar tools and materials
9" x 12" scratch-foam sheets, animal drawings, pencils, ballpoint pens, implements of different thicknesses, masking tape.
Today we will transfer our drawings to our printing plates. Before we do that, let's look again at our drawings. Place drawings where students can view them
  • Find drawings in which the artists used different kinds and thicknesses of lines. What effect does that create?
  • Find a drawing in which the artist created 3 different areas of visual texture. How did they do that?
  • If students did not have time during the last session to work with a partner and discuss one another's drawings they can do so now and spend several minutes revising their drawings.
Demonstrate how to lay a drawing over a foam plate and use a pen to trace over the lines drawn to transfer the image onto the plate. Point out that doing this will destroy their original drawing. Emphasize that they should focus on the major outlines of the animal and its environment. Visual textures and patterns should be added directly onto the foam plate.
The students will place their sketches over foam plates and anchor them with small pieces of masking tape at the top and bottom edge to prevent slippage during transfer. They will trace over the sketches using a ballpoint pen. After the basic outline is transferred, students can draw the details--textures and patterns--using various implements directly onto the foam plate. As a final step, drawing over their indentations with ballpoint pens will enable the students to see clearly the marks they are making on the foam.
  • Did you encounter any problems transferring your sketch to the foam plate?  If so, what were they?
  • How might you change what you did?
  • What might be the next step in the printmaking process?