You've Made Gelatin Monoprints – Now What?

I've been making gelatin monoprints for a couple of years now, and I have a stack of printed papers to show for it.

gelatin monoprint collage by cate prato
My collage using a cut-up gelatin monoprint.

Honestly, I could happily churn out monoprint after monoprint, oohing and aahing over each little creation. But I'm at the point where I want to do more with them.

I've made a couple of collages incorporating gelatin monoprints as backgrounds. But over the weekend I decided to try something I've seen other artists do: cut up the monoprint and use it in another way.

First I chose a few prints and played around with them, freehand cutting shapes and motifs. At one point, I sliced a monoprint into strips with the idea of weaving and overlapping them. Before I got to that point, though, I saw how these heart strips looked and liked the concept of the spaces in the heart.

I took a house-shaped block of wood I had already primed with gesso and dripped ink on it here and there. I brushed over the ink with a foam brush and the ink picked up the rough and uneven textures in the wood with the help of the tooth provided by the gesso.  I blended the ink here and there with a paper towel, then stamped over it with a script stamp.

I dabbed the ink-stained paper towel on the paper monoprint strips to bring the background color into the paper and tone down the white area a bit. I also added a little green oil stick on the edges of the house in order to harmonize the background with the paper strips.

Next I stamped the words "heart," "home," and "us" on the cut strips and glued the strips down with gel medium. As a final touch, I glued a heart I had made previously out of air-drying clay onto the roof of the house as an embellishment.

Now that I've taken the plunge, I think I'll be cutting up more of my gelatin monoprints. Then I can happily make more!

When I'm looking for ways to shake up my art and create something new, I'm always inspired by the expert artists who teach our Cloth Paper Scissors Workshops. You can learn monoprinting techniques, collage, mixed-media painting, art journaling, and more. Discover the possibilities in the Cloth Paper Scissors Shop.

P.S. How do you use your monoprints? What's your favorite monoprinting technique? Leave your response below.

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