Tuesday, February 14

Notan meets zentangle

I've been having a really wonderful time with my young screenprinting students on Saturdays. I've got 6 quiet, focused 12-year-olds this semester, three of which have come back for a second semester. After working in public schools with 30+ kids it is an absolute indulgence to teach just 6. It's a wonderful opportunity to really push the possibilities of screenprinting, too. Usually I plan 3 projects and they complete 2, but this semester I'm positive we'll complete 3 and maybe even 4!
 Our very first project this semester was a group print using contact paper to block the screen. The kids each cut one shape out of a square of the contact paper for a notan-style positive/negative exercise. They did a rainbow pull of green and blue ink. The following week we experimented with different patterns for making visual texture, much like how zentangles are made.
 They used sharpie marker to draw patterns in all the negative white space, and then added color and shading with colored pencil. Some kids ended up doing sort of a color wheel arrangement.
 I've been slightly obsessed with the whole notan and zentangle trends this year, so it was fun to combine the two styles in one project. I was so pleased with how well they turned out, that I requested and got to have a hallway exhibit from our gallery director. At Fleisher we have 3 hallways that we use for rotating displays of student artwork from both the children and adult classes.
I think the kids must have really enjoyed this project- when they made their T-Shirt designs for their second project at least 2 of them used similar line and pattern elements:
Having explored screenprinting for fine art and fashion, our final project will explore the idea of advertising to make a 2-3 color print.
PS: Happy Valentine's Day!

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