Kids Learn the Artistic Charm of Mass Production Through Printmaking

logo-w-sunburstKayla Desroches/KMXT

Kodiak’s First Friday Art Walk will feature artwork three different venues this month, and one will host the work of many young artists who just learned printmaking.

Local artist Bonnie Dillard recently led a group of 3rd to 8th graders from St Mary’s School in the basics of creating art. They covered drawing, collage, and putting lines and shapes to paper.

“So, we talked about those kinds of things and then we talked about filling the whole space, which is a challenge for some kids. [They] tend to draw very small as they become more tentative about their work. They’re a little shy about it and they tend to draw very small. So, just filling up that space was a big challenge.”

Dillard says all the skills they worked on were a buildup for the printmaking portion of her class. Printmaking is less forgiving because students cannot erase the lines they make. The technique involves cutting into a soft block and then inking the high spots and pressing it onto paper, where the marks become permanent.

“The blocks were tricky for some of the younger students because we used what’s called Safety-Kut. It’s a soft block that’s sort of like a large eraser, and we had to work on how the tool is held, how badly you can cut yourself if you’re not careful, and how to carve away from yourself.”

She says it takes some time to figure how the depth of the carving will affect the print.

The students’ work will be displayed at the Frame Shop starting at 5 p.m. tomorrow night. The other venues are the Alutiiq Museum, with art from Hanna Sholl, and the Fly By, with photographs by the Kodiak Camera Club.

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