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Inspired Artist: Block Print For Beginners | Elise Young | Review

Review copy c/o NetGalley

Written by Elise Young, a Toronto-based artist and creator of Bloomingprint Studio, Block Print For Beginners is a brilliant new guide to printmaking techniques. Starting with the basics of tools/materials and sharing tips on how to find inspiration before moving onto different techniques and project ideas to try, the book is informative and flows really well. There are lots of pictures of finished prints/designs throughout, as well as step by step images and links to download templates which makes it really easy to follow along with the projects.

One of my favourite techniques showcased in the book is the Multicolor Interlocking Block Print. The design idea shown features a cute stack of four tea cups printed in shades of blue, perfectly demonstrating this technique where cutting the block into sections allows you to use a range of different colours and reassemble before printing. Another project I loved was the Mosaic-effect Block Print that shows how you can create an outline stamp design which can be filled with origami papers to add beautiful patterns and colours. Whilst I have created stamps similar to this before I’ve never tried adding in papers so this is definitely an idea I’ve added to my own ‘to try’ list! The final project that really stood out to me was Printing Abstract Forms, where simple geometric shapes are carved as individual stamps and can be used to create a variety of designs. I really love these types of patterns and as the shapes are simple this is a great project idea for beginners.

In addition to those focusing on a variety of techniques, there are also further suggested projects including customised tea towels, wallpaper, wrapping paper and cards, showing readers how the possibilities for using their newly created blocks/stamps are endless! The wrapping paper in particular I thought looked really pretty and would be perfect for unique birthday and Christmas gift wrap.

Near the end of the book there is a handy glossary page as well as resource links to help readers expand their knowledge beyond the ‘beginner’ projects included.

The author’s love of printmaking and creating art using these techniques shines through in Block Printing For Beginners and I would recommend it as a great starter guide for those new to the world of block printing. I would also recommend the book to those who, like myself, have some printmaking experience but might just find a few new ideas to try too.

You can find more about the book and see some of Elise’s beautiful prints over on her Instagram page @bloomingprint

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